Is the Medicine internship in Vietnam right for me?
Our medical internship in Vietnam will add plenty of work experience to your CV. This is perfect if you’re planning on studying medicine, or you’re a medical student wanting to experience a hospital environment. It’s also useful for interviews. Talk about what you saw and learned, and the challenges you overcame. This will help give your application an extra edge.
You can also use your medical placement to explore different specialisations. Let us know what departments you’re interested in before you go, and we’ll organise it for you.
To do a medical internship in Vietnam, you need to have completed at least one year of medical related studies. The project runs throughout the year. You can join at any time, and stay as long as you like.
What do you do on the Medical Internship in Vietnam?
Your role at your medical placement in Vietnam is strictly observational. These are some of the activities you do during your internship:
- Shadow doctors and nurses on their daily rounds
- Spend time in one or more hospital departments
- Shadow doctors who treat autistic children
- Learn about traditional Vietnamese Medicine
- Attend medical workshops to share presentations on your hospital experiences
Shadow doctors and nurses on their daily rounds
By following doctors and nurses on their rounds, you will get a deeper insight into how medicine is practised. We encourage you to ask questions and take notes to learn as much as possible. This will help you expand your practical medical knowledge, beyond what some textbooks can teach you.
Spend time in one or more hospital departments
The hospitals we work with have different departments. Let us know what departments you’re interested in before you go, and we’ll organise it for you. This is a great way to explore specialisations you’d like to pursue in your career. Please be aware that you’ll need to let us know in advance if you want to work in multiple departments.
Shadow doctors who treat autistic children
One of our placements specialises in acupuncture. Here, you can see how doctors treat autistic children. The analgesia acupuncture department covers many types of surgery such as neck tumors, breast cancer, liver, urology, and gynaecology. If you join this placement, you will develop skills in acupuncture. You can do things like fill syringes with medication, attach electrodes, and more. All of this work is done under strict supervision.
Learn about traditional Vietnamese Medicine
Some of our placements give you the opportunity learn about traditional medicine. Vietnamese traditional medicine is fascinating. We encourage you to learn about it and think about the contrast with modern medicine
Once a month we organise medical workshops at our office. This gives you the chance to learn from traditional doctors, guest speakers, and other medical professionals. We also run medical research sessions for you to present on your experiences and watch other interns present. Here you can also train for outreach events and create handouts for the local community.
Types of placements on the Medical Internship in Vietnam
In Vietnam, you join specific hospital departments. These include:
- Internal medicine
- Traditional Medicine
Please be aware that you’ll need to let us know in advance if you want to work in multiple departments during your internship. Feel free to contact us and we can help advise you.
Where you work on the Medical Internship in Vietnam
You’ll work at a hospital in Hanoi. You’ll find that the standard of hospitals here is fairly similar to those back home.
Hanoi is a large, modern city and Vietnam’s capital. You’ll navigate your way through thousands of motorcycles, Vietnam’s primary mode of transport for most people. Follow the delicious smells coming from street food vendors at nearly every corner. Enjoy lunches of spring rolls and Vietnam’s famous pho, a noodle dish with rice, broth, herbs, and chicken or beef.
A typical day on the Medicine internship in Vietnam
Your work will take place during weekdays, and work hours vary depending on where you are placed.
Most mornings start at about 8am. You’ll spend the first half of your day shadowing doctors on their rounds and observing what they do. You’ll break for lunch between 11am and 2pm. After lunch, you’ll return for the next shift and work from 2pm to 4.30pm. Mornings are generally busier than afternoons, as most patients are treated in the morning. Be prepared to have a busy start to each day!
Attend our medical workshops once a month to learn from traditional doctors, guest speakers, and other medical professionals. We also run medical research sessions for you to give presentations on your hospital experiences and listen to other interns. You can also use these sessions to train for outreach events and to create handouts for the local community.
Your weekends will be free for you to explore. Visit spectacular landmarks attractions such as Ha Long Bay, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can also visit ancient temples, shop till you drop at night markets, drink endless cups of Vietnamese coffee, and sing your heart out at karaoke bars.
What are the aims and impact of this project?
The aim of this internship is to help you get medical work experience in Vietnam and expand your practical medical knowledge.
In addition, you’ll also get involved in medical outreach work. You’ll work in rural areas where regular access to healthcare is limited. You’ll help provide medical care in schools, care centres, and villages, and also raise awareness about healthcare issues facing Vietnam.
We have set the following goals for this project through our Medicine & Healthcare Management Plan:
- Encourage an understanding of medical practices and promote an exchange of medical knowledge
- Improve the quality of healthcare provided to patients
- Improve the quality of specialised or alternative healthcare provided
- Improve hygiene standards
- Improve access to basic healthcare for disadvantaged groups
Professional volunteers and medical electives for students
This project is also ideally suited to professionals interested in using their skills to help, as well as university medical and healthcare elective students.
As a professional, you can be sure we will match your training and expertise to the placement where you are needed most. With your support, we can make an even bigger impact on the local communities we work with.
If you are an elective student, we will organise an elective placement where you can learn as much as possible. We want you gain the knowledge and skills that will begin to shape your professional career.
We set out the aims and objectives of our projects in documents called Management Plans. We use them to properly plan the work you’ll do. They also help us measure and evaluate our achievements and impact each year.
Ultimately, our Management Plans help us make our projects better. This in turn means you get to be part of something that makes a real impact where it’s needed. Read more about our Management Plans.
Measuring our impact
Our projects work towards clear long-term goals, with specific annual objectives. Every volunteer and intern we send to these projects helps us work towards these goals, no matter how long they spend on our projects.
Every year we take a step back and look at how much progress we've made towards these goals. We put together a Global Impact Report, which documents our achievements. Find out more about the impact our global community of volunteers, interns and staff make, and read the latest report.
Leisure activities and free time
Vietnam offers a mix of bustling cities and picturesque countrysides. With so many different activities and tourist sites, you’re bound to find plenty of ways to spend your free time.
For a glimpse into the country’s history, you can spend an afternoon exploring the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology or the National Museum of Vietnamese History. The Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum is also a major historic site, located in Hanoi.
If you’re looking to buy some souvenirs, there are many markets with locally made products on sale. Evenings in Hanoi are filled with excitement and bright, colourful lights. You can watch street performers and then head to a nearby restaurant for a taste of local cuisine.
The countryside, with its emerald rice paddies stretching to the horizon, provides the perfect escape from the busy capital.
We run many different projects in Vietnam, so there will likely be other volunteers in-country with you. This makes travelling as a group easy to arrange. However, you’re welcome to explore independently if you prefer.
Safety and staff support
Your safety and security is our prime concern. We have many procedures and systems to ensure you have the support you need to enjoy your trip with peace of mind. Our Projects Abroad staff are available 24 hours a day to help, and will be on-hand to make sure you settle in well at your accommodation and placement. If you encounter any problems, they will be available to help at any time.
Find out more about safety and backup.
Meet the team in Vietnam
Not quite what you’re looking for?
Take a look at the following pages where you'll find collections of similar projects: