Health Clerkship - Medical Students


The USFQ Global Health Program offers electives for First and Second Year students during the summer session, and for Third and Fourth Year students throughout the year. Those who have completed an international rotation become better clinicians by broadening their clinical exposure and experience, especially with regard to diseases that are endemic in developing countries and rarely encountered in the student’s home country (diarrhea, malaria, leishmaniasis, for example). International clinical rotations not only benefit the medical student, but also help to serve the needs of the local population. Furthermore, medical students and residents with an international clinical experience will broaden their professional horizons by discovering public health and community service fields. They will learn to embrace new attitudes towards medicine among low-resource and multicultural populations. The clerkship experience includes a Medical Spanish module to enhance the student’s field experience. Read the material for Medical Spanish for more information.


  1. Student application, submitted at least 3 months in advance of requested start date.
  2. Letter of recommendation from the student’s school
  3. 70% or above on the USFQ Spanish placement exam
  4. Proof of Immunizations
  5. Proof of health insurance or student health insurance coverage may be purchased from the university for the duration of the student’s stay in Ecuador.
  6. Pre-Trip education/orientation, which includes:
    • On site-specific issues
    • Socio-cultural, health beliefs, language
    • Discussion of health (medical) problems that will be encountered


Primary Health Care Clerkship: Summer Program

Available for: Pre-med, First, Second, Third and Fourth Year Medical Students:

The program offers rotations on primary health care services where a series of community outreach activities are implemented. These include home visits, health prevention and promotion improvement activities, schools and nurseries visits and Ministry of Health’s facilities for health services.

These activities have tutorship with a local physician and USFQ professors follow-up.

Time recommended for the rotation: 10 weeks

Upon completion of the rotation(s), students must write a report about their Global Health experience in Ecuador.

Clinical Clerkships

Available for: Last and second-to-last years of medical school

Schedule (subject to change)

Clinical rotations take place at USFQ´s teaching hospital: Hospital de los Valles. The clinical rotation is in Spanish. The student attends formal clinical rounds with the attending physician on a daily basis. The student works closely with the Service Faculty, has permanent tutorship to prepare medical records, follow patient progress and patient care. Also, students are required to attend all academic activities (6 hours weekly in average) that include morning report, lectures on different subjects according to the USFQ Core Clerkship Syllabus, weekly conferences which include guest lecturers, research conferences, Grand Round sessions, as well as Journal Club, simulation, workshops and a night shift every 4 days. Rotations available: Internal medicine, Pediatrics, Gyn/Ob and Surgery.

Students may choose a standard clerkship of four up to 16 weeks beginning the first Monday February, March, April, May, June, July, September, October and November).

* Research opportunities may be available during their rotation time.
*Students may choose up to three different Global Health sites and specialties, please review the list (link here to list). We cannot guarantee students their first choice; they will be placed based on availability.

Participating Health Care Institutions (to date):

Hospital de los Valles
Located next to the School of Medicine USFQ, Hospital de los Valles is a 100 bed, private hospital in the Quito suburb of Cumbayá.
+ Website

Rural settings

Hospital de Yaruquí
This second level hospital in the town of Yaruquí is located near the Mariscal Sucre International Airport. It is currently expanding to 50 beds. It is about 45 minutes from Quito.

Subcentro de Salud Tumbaco, Lumbisí y Cumbayá
This is an ambulatory clinic that offers family and community medicine. This health center also makes weekly visits to local public schools to provide free primary care.

Global Health