Applied Immersion

Community-Based Urgent Care
Apply Here

Who is this program for?

This program is intended for medical and pre-med students, nursing public health, health care management, business, emergency medical technicians (EMT), paramedics, and adult education students and anybody interested in the very important theme of urgent care in rural communities.  Participants will also gain a deeper understanding community based health care cascade models by designing and implementing first responder training programs and working at FIBUSPAM’s outpatient surgical center and mobile medical clinics

Program Description

This program provides participants an opportunity to build the healthcare delivery capacity of underserved communities in Ecuador while acquiring new skills in public health programming specific to urgent care. The diverse cultural and economic context of Ecuador (with focus on the province of Chimborazo) will challenge participants to think creatively as they explore scalable concepts to improve access to urgent care in low resource settings.  During this four-week immersive program participants will engage with rural communities to gain a deeper understanding of the economic and geographic realities of accessing health care in developing countries. Participants will also gain a deeper understanding community based health care cascade models by designing and implementing first responder training programs and working at FIBUSPAM’s outpatient surgical center and mobile medical clinics. Participants will enhance language learning skills and cultural competency, as well as gain a unique perspective on the social, environmental, public health, and entrepreneurial situations of a developing country.

Skill Development

These experiences and skills are highly valued in today’s professional environment. In addition, participants will:

  • Gain insight into the opportunities, inherent risks and limitations in the developing world
  • Have ample opportunities to significantly increase Spanish and Kichwa language proficiency
  • Observe, learn and live in a diverse cultural setting
  • Experience homestay living with local families as a rich cultural exchange
  • Have the opportunity to collaborate with development and relief organizations

Course Components & Outcomes

Developing World Insight

Gain insight into the opportunities, inherent risks and limitations in the developing world

Language Development

Have ample opportunities to significantly increase Spanish and Kichwa language proficiency

Cultural Exchange

Observe, learn and live in a diverse cultural setting

Homestay

Experience homestay living with local families as a rich cultural exchange

International Collaboration

Have the opportunity to  collaborative with development and relief organizations

Diverse Curriculum

Learn through case studies, group discussions, journaling, experiential education and local exchanges.

Medical Campaigns

COMMUNITY OUTREACH

Also know as “Caravanas”, these are opportunities to accompany the international FIBUSPAM medical outreach team when they visit communities.  This experience will allow participants ample ability to contribute directly to the well-being of communities that are desperately in need of support.

Eco-Tourism

ENVIRONMENTAL ENGAGEMENT

We will visit several parts of the Andes and Pacific Coastal Region (4-week program only) to experience what local communities are doing to sustainably improve their environment.

Group Dynamics

INNOVATION IN ACTION

Participants will interact with NGO’s, governmental entities, and indigenous professionals, making a profound community impact while also gaining in-depth knowledge of economic development in Ecuador.

Check out what our rural outreach clinics are like

Attending Our Program

For each of our applied immersion programs, we offer 2 different formats that vary in duration of your stay in Ecuador

10 Days

This is an intense experience that focuses on maximizing impact in communities along with visiting some of Ecuador’s beautiful sites.

Program highlights:

  • 5 medical outreach campaigns
  • Visits to Quito, Cotopaxi, and Baños
  • Program recap with theme focus

28 Days

This experience is for those that want to take a deeper dive into the world of international development while immersing oneself in the culture of Ecuador.

Program highlights:

  • 7 medical outreach campaigns
  • Visits to Quito, Cotopaxi, Coastal Ecuador, Alausí, and Baños
  • Homestay options
  • 10 days focusing on specialty theme of program with case studies, group discussions, journaling, experiential education and local exchanges.
  • Participants will interact with NGO’s, governmental entities, and indigenous professionals, making a profound community impact while also gaining in-depth knowledge of economic development in Ecuador.

Program Schedule

Program dates are  August 1 – 28, 2019

For this program.  Participants can choose to enroll in the first 10 days or the entire 28 days of the program.  Participants do have the opportunity to stay in-country after the program, as many fall in love with Ecuador and want to stay a little longer.

View Full Schedule

Day 1 – Arrival to Quito and settle in Hotel

Day 2 – Quito Day – Orientation and Tour of Quito

Day 3 – Travel to Riobamba – Visit Cotopaxi – Visit FIBUSPAM clinic

Day 4 – Volunteer Campaign (Caravana #1)

Day 5 – Volunteer Campaign (Caravana #2)

Day 6 – Volunteer Campaign (Caravana #3)

Day 7 – Volunteer Campaign (Caravana #4)

Day 8 – Volunteer Campaign (Caravana #5)

Day 9 – Specialty Day (Community-based Urgent Care workshop) and Visit to Baños de Ambato thermal spas

Day 10 – Free morning in Baños de Ambato thermal spas and travel back to Riobamba

Day 11 – Community-based Urgent Care  Intensive Begins – Intro to FIBUSPAM Ophthalmology Program and Surgical Immersion

Day 12 – Community-based Urgent Care  Intensive Day #2 – Visit Jatun Wasi

Day 13 – Community-Based Urgent Care Intensive Day #3 – Visit Jatun Wasi day #2

Day 14 – Visit Guayaquil/Coastal Ecuador Day #1 (Eco and Agri-tourism)

Day 15 – Visit Guayaquil/Coastal Ecuador Day #2 (Eco and Agri-tourism)

Day 16 – Return to Riobamba and begin Homestays

Day 17 – Community Vision Health Care  #4 – Group work and CPR focus

Day 18 – Community Vision Health Care  #5 – Group work, training, and First Aid

Day 19 – Community Vision Health Care  #6 – Group work, and project development

Day 20 – Community Vision Health Care  #7 – Group work and project presentation

Day 21 – Visit Mt. Chimborazo

Day 22 – Desk review – Project Proposal – Donor overview

Day 23 – Day tour – Nariz del Diablo – Alausí Homestay Despedida (Goodbye)

Day 24 – Alausi travel day

Day 25 – CPR Caravanas in communities around Alausi

Day 26 – CPR Caravanas in communities around Alausi day #2

Day 27 – Travel to Quito – Stop by Riobamba for Goodbye Celebration

Day 28 – Departure from Quito

Contact Hours / Certification Information

During the 28 day experience, participants will experience the folllowing amount of hours that can be credited towards certification:

  • Three online workshops prior to arrival (cultural profile of health care systems in Ecuador, continuums of care models in developing countries, designing and implementing cascade trainings) (6 hours)
  • Spanish Class hours (1:1 Teacher/Participant): ELECTIVE
  • Community-Based Urgent Care Management: Classes and Presentations (32 Hours)
  • Community-Based Urgent Care Management: Fieldwork with Professional Field Leadership (90 hours)
  • Clinical Observations (Variable)

 

During the 10 day experience, participants will experience the folllowing amount of hours that can be credited towards certification:

  • Three online workshops prior to arrival (cultural profile of health care systems in Ecuador, continuums of care models in developing countries, designing and implementing cascade trainings) (6 hours)
  • Community-Based Urgent Care Management: Classes and Presentations (10 hours)
  • Community-Based Urgent Care Management: Fieldwork with Professional Field Leadership (40 hours)
  • Surgical Observation (Variable)
Program Structural Summary

The program is divided into four segments:

  1. Pre-arrival
  2. Orientation and Foundation Building 
  3. Field Study Intensive
  4. Conclusion and presentation

 

Pre-Arrival (To be completed online prior to leaving for Ecuador) 
Pre-arrival participants are provided with all itineraries and safety and program-specific information. Participants are divided into groups based on language capabilities, area of study, and interests. These groups work as short-term “innovative teams” (Spanish: Innovar = Innovate and Equipo = Team – Innovaquipo).  Each Innovaquipo will be participating in a variety of undertakings that are individually and cumulatively intended to provide benefit to the communities of Ecuador.  Each Innovaquipo will be designated a development project that is based on the theme of the Applied Immersion Program (Andean Sustainable Communities, Community-Based Urgent Care, Community Vision Health Care). Details on each development project as well as overall program goals and experiences will be discussed in 3 online webinars prior to arrival in Ecuador.

Orientation and Foundation Building 
Upon arrival in country, all participants spend the first segment (approximately 2 days) of their time in Quito. There will be orientation sessions and some time to get to know the city and team members and acclimatize to the high altitude (nearly 10,000 feet).  We then journey to Riobamba. Along the way, we have more orientations on the country of Ecuador, visit volcano Cotopaxi, and finally visit the FIBUSPAM clinic in Riobamba. The next day we jump right into fieldwork by accompanying the FIBUSPAM team on volunteer campaigns (“caravanas”) for 5 straight days in the communities of Chimborazo province.  The focus of this first orientation and foundation building segment is to provide participants with the necessary orientation, knowledge and skills for the program-specific “intensive” sessions that follow.   This “ramp up” segment is essential to ensure that participants can work as effectively as possible with our development professionals and constituents in the field.  Upon completing this part of the program, participants are deemed fit to collaborate both individually and in groups (Innovaquipos). Participants work under the guidance and leadership of PACH’s experienced expatriate and local field personnel to effectuate positive change with their undertakings.

Field Study Intensive

After a few days of relaxation and a visit to the beautiful town of Baños de Ambato, participants begin the program-specific Field Study Intensive in which they spend 7 days focusing on the program goals that were established in the Pre-Arrival and built upon in the previous stage.  In the middle of the 7 day intensive, participants will spend a few days visiting “eco-“ and “agri-“ tourism projects in the Coastal region of Ecuador.

During this segment, Innovaquipos spend more time focusing on the program-specific goals.  Participants we have the unique opportunity to collaborate with indigenous university Jatun Yachay Wasi in which new insights will be formed into opportunities for the developmental enhancement of local communities and their economic, environmental, and social well-being.  As each participant brings different skills and perspectives, it is desired that our constituents in the field can take advantage of working with as many different individuals as possible. At all times each Innovaquipo is accompanied by two development professionals (Ecuadorian and from USA) whose role is to facilitate success in the field. Innovaquipos work with Peace Corps Volunteers, local community service organizations, local businesses and local entrepreneurs. All activities and logistics are structured with anticipation.

Conclusion and Presentation 
Finally, Innovaquipos will wrap up their field work, prepare, and present what they had learned during their experience in the Immersion Program.  During this segment, we will visit Mt. Chimborazo, day tour Nariz del Diablo, and elaborate feasibility studies in new communities around Riobamba.  We will also have a celebration farewell (despedida) to thank and say goodbye to our homestay families before the group leaves for Quito and returns to the USA.

Homestay

Spanish immersion is all about having contact with the local population and practicing Spanish with native speakers as much as possible. To that end, all of our Innovations in Community Vision Health Care participants will have the opportunity to live with host families. All homestay families are trained by PACH. As such, these families understand the needs of the participants. The homestay is an essential step in helping participants gain an understanding of how local people live and work.  It is also an invaluable way to improve on conversational Spanish. The vast majority of participants form great friendships during this process and decide to stay with host families when not designated by the program. Many participants speak to this experience as one of their most valuable aspects of the program.

 

Living in a home stay with a host family has many linguistic and cultural advantages:

  • Participants will have close contact with native Spanish speakers, which will give them plenty of opportunities to practice Spanish in realistic everyday situations with people who are patient with and willing to help participants learning Spanish
  • Participants will be able to participate in their host family’s daily lives, gaining unique insights that cannot be taught in a classroom.
  • Participants will not only learn about but will be able to experience firsthand the customs and culture of Ecuador
  • Eating with the host family will provide participants with delicious, nutritious, and safely cooked daily meals.

 

Overall, our families are happy to help you practice your Spanish, and to give you tips and advice to make your experience a uniquely memorable one, and will do their best to provide you with a pleasant “home away from home.”

 

Exceptions:

 

Although we greatly encourage that participants stay with one family per participant, accommodations can be made so that every participant feels comfortable in their surroundings.

Cost

28 Day program: $3250 cost participant
10 Day Program: $1600 per participant

All in country expenses are covered including lodging, meals, program and activity fees, supplies, and materials.  All materials to be used in the classroom setting as well as in the field are prepared and paid for by PACH, all transportation and meals are covered by PACH, and a daily stipend is given to the participant when necessary. PACH does not cover airfare to and from Quito, Ecuador, personal insurance, entertainment costs outside of pre-planned activities, and tips for drivers and guides as necessary, participants are expected to assume this expense.

Contact Us for More Information