"Improving the health status of underserved populations through sustainable and comprehensive research, service and educational initiatives related to infectious diseases."

Primary Care Clinical Elective in Ecuador

Summer 2014
(2 weeks)

Directed by David Drozek, D.O.

June 2 to June 14, 2014

(approximate dates, subject to change and cancellation)
Non-credit option available
Last updated on 01/15/2014 02:16 PM

Applications Open
Application Deadline


Summer, 2014


The Primary Health Care Clinical Elective in Ecuador Program will involve a variety of clinical and health education experiences.

Activities will include physical-clinical examinations and follow up, community education and clinical shadowing. Students will work alongside medical technicians and physicians from the Ministry of Health and Catholic University of Ecuador.  Students will also have the opportunity to participate in home visits to research and conduct interventions related to the social, cultural and economic issues associated with the risk factor of Chagas disease.  The objectives of the program are to:

  • Provide quality primary care and health education to Ecuadorians.

  • Provide opportunities for hands on clinical experience and cultural exchange with Ecuadorian health care workers.

  • Give exposure to different healthcare settings and systems.

  • Develop professionalism and cultural competence.

  • Explore healthcare in low resources settings.


Clinical Experience In Rural Communities

Spend two weeks providing primary care in the beautiful southern mountains of Ecuador. This Ecuador program will include hands-on clinical experience with Ecuadorians from farming communities.  Students will also learn about how living conditions, water sources, and access to health care impacts the health of rural communities.

Students will work alongside medical technicians and physicians form the US and the Ministry of Health and Catholic University of Ecuador.  As a team, students and preceptors will set up mobile health clinics in rural villages.  Students will also have the opportunity to hike to home visits to provide care to persons with disabilities.

Watch Video about TDI Programs in Ecuador

Experiential Learning - Students teams will work in association with the Ecuadorean Ministry of Health.  They will assist in setting up clinics in rural villages and provide assistance to the Ecuadorian personnel in its operation.


Multiple Components:  Preceptors and students will rotate in different stations within the clinic including:  patient intake and vitals, field lab, eyeglass clinic, and clinical consults.  Experience Ecuador - Participants will be immersed in true Ecuadorian Culture.  Students will be working with Ecuadorian healthcare personnel throughout the entire program.




Arrive in Quito June 1, departure from Quito June 15

Open to OU-HCOM, nursing and other College of Health Sciences and Professions students in good standing (HCOM) or at least a 3.0 overall GPA.  Non-Ohio University students also accepted. 

Excursions will include visits to
cultural sites in Ecuador


Living Arrangements
Lodging will be in economy hostels or motels.  In Quito meals will take place at local restaurants.  In the field, breakfast, snack, lunch and dinner will be prepared by local personnel in the communities. 


Program Fees (clinical component only)

(Contact Dr. Grijalva for costs of participating in the Tropical Disease Research or staying in Ecuador longer after the clinical component to work in the lab.)

All fees may vary +/-$100 based on the size of the team.

Ohio Nursing Students (Also Physical Therapy, Other Health Professions)


HCOM Medical Students

(physicians, residents in training and other practicing health care professionals that volunteer their time)

Courses and Credit
OCOM 8911 Global Health Rotation(2)
NRSE 4900 Special Topics in Nursing
(6) - Pre and post trip work will be required of nursing students to receive 6 credits for the program.
HSP 2900 Special Topics in Health Science (1-3)
HSP 5900 Special Topics in Health Science (1-3)
PT 7930 Independent Study in Physical Therapy (1-3)


Actions Required

Application Process (Deadline February 2, 2014)

1.  Complete the online application in EAIS (http://eais.admsrv.ohio.edu/eais/student/) and essay.

2.  Follow the program checklist:

  • Year 3 & 4 OU HCOM Students must also obtain and send a letter  from your CORE office confirming you have permission to include the program in your schedule and that you are in good academic standing.

  • If you are NOT an Ohio University Student, you will need to complete additional paperwork as well as sign up for an OHIO E-mail account prior to submitting an application. Please consult the checklist for more information.

3. Students will be notified of their nomination to the program 2 weeks after the application deadline (February 2, 2014). Once you have been accepted to a program you will receive a letter indicating additional requirements for participation in the program. These requirements include an application fee, program deposit and submission of a digital photo, your passport information, travel itinerary and documentation of immunizations. . You must also register with the U.S. Department of State, and confirm your registration in EAIS. You will also apply for International Health Insurance through EAIS.

4.  A non-refundable deposit of $500 will be required within 2 weeks of acceptance into the program.  The deposit will be applied to the program  costs and deducted from your bill:

  • OU-Participants will be sent a deposit slip with their e-mailed nomination letter and will have to pay a non-refundable deposit of $500 to the Bursar's office (Chubb Hall). Cash or check payments accepted.

  • Non-OU Participants will be sent a deposit slip by mail and will return payment by check to the Ohio University Bursar's Office, P.O. Box 960, Athens, OH 45701. Please include the deposit slip with the mailing.

5.  All fees (including the $150 administrative fee) will be posted to your Ohio University Student Account (You WILL NOT receive an invoice by mail) and be due prior to departure in Mid-May to Early June. Non-OU students must activate an OHIO email address at https://www.ohio.edu/myid after completing the Non-Degree Application and receiving a PID number from Ohio University Admissions. You will need this number to complete the application as well as access and pay their account.


Funding opportunities:

1)   OU-HCOM and HSP STUDENTS can apply to Global Health Travel Awards

2)   All participants can apply to the TDI Student Travel Award

3)   OU Students can apply to the Office of Education Abroad Summer Travel Grants

Contact Information


David Drozek, D.O.

Assistant Professor of Surgery
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine

Ohio University

106 Parks Hall

Athens,  Ohio 45701
Cell: 678-447-2509
FAX: 1-877-337-6935 (1-877-DDROZEK)

send me files via: https://dropbox.yousendit.com/drozek


Ronald Vance

Associate Professor of Nursing 



Office of Global Health Programs
E118 Grover Center, Athens, OH  45701
Phone:  740-593-2359; Fax 740-593-1730.


Preceptor Information
Preceptor Application Packet (includes application checklist and Preceptor Agreement)
Faculty Profile Form

Useful Information
Podcast series about the TDI project
A series of 10 podcasts showcasing the different activities within the program.

What to bring
A list of suggested supplies, clothing and other items.

Travelers Health Information
Vaccinations required, anti-malaria prophylaxis, etc.

Logistics and Safety
TDI programs have an excellent safety record. See details about the logistical arrangements, email access, etc.

Guidelines for Ethical Practice
The OHIO-Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine has adopted the AAMC’s “Guidelines for Premedical and Medical Students Providing Patient Care During Clinical Experiences Abroad”.

Other resources

Ecuador Links
Information about Ecuador: News and Media, Tourism, Cities, Culture, etc.

Infectious Disease Links
Information about protozoan, bacterial, Viral diseases and relevant organizations

Health and Safety
Ohio University Office of Education Abroad suggests you follow the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control for healthy travel to your destination: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/list.aspx. Please familiarize yourself with these recommendations and requirements prior to applying to a program.

Refer to the State Department site for information related to safety and security at this destination: http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1106.html.

Entry and Exit Requirements
U.S. citizens are required to have a valid U.S. passport when traveling outside of the United States. If you plan to study or travel abroad in the next year, apply for your passport now: http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html

It is each student’s individual responsibility to determine the entry and exit requirements specific to their personal situation. Some countries also require a visa to legally enter and reside in the country. The following information will hold true for most US passport holders. Entry and exit requirements for this country can be found at http://www.travel.state.gov/travel/travel_1744.html. US citizens do not need a visa or other special documents to enter the country for the length of this program. Please also note that visa requirements may vary if you plan to stay in the country longer than the program dates, if you have recently visited the country, or if you plan to travel to other countries during or after the program. Please familiarize yourself with these recommendations and requirements prior to applying to a program in order to determine your appropriate course of action.

For more specific visa related information please visit OEA’s Visa Information Page. http://www.ohio.edu/educationabroad/Resources/Visa.html

Information for NON-US citizens can be found here.




For more information contact Dr. Drozek at drozek@ohio.edu 
Ohio University
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
351 Grosvenor Hall, Athens, Ohio 45701

Last updated: 01/15/2014