What Is Global Health Immersion?

Global Health Immersion

The SCOI Global Health Clinical Immersion Program is an inclusive program allowing pre-clinical medical students in Quebec to have a first learning experience of the cultural and organizational challenges inherent in global health in resource-limited settings.

This experience aims to provide future Quebec doctors with a better understanding of global health abroad and to offer them an opportunity to live in such an environment.

The SCOI program is an inclusive training comprising 3 components: a theoretical component, an immersion abroad component, and a component for reintegration and structuring of acquired knowledge upon return to Canada.

The theoretical component consists of 30 hours of training on various subjects deemed critical by the training team in order to have basic notions to achieve the goal of living and emancipating themselves in their 6-week immersion. The training also aims more broadly to offer students an overview to improve their skills and attitudes as doctors to be better equipped here and abroad.

The immersion abroad component consists of a 6-week stay in one of our 4 partner environments in Latin America, Africa or Asia. In this phase of the program, the student will be confronted with cultural, organizational and personal challenges and will be required to use the various tools and knowledge provided in the theoretical component in order to deepen their understanding of the issues.

Finally, back in Canada, the student will be led to structure their experience around a topic related to global health that particularly marked them during their experience and to create an article or a video allowing them to communicate their experience to other students in their preclinical years. This component also serves to put the experience into perspective and to understand its added value in the student’s course.

Recognized Optional University Courses

It is important to note that SCOI is partnering with the University of Montreal, the University of Sherbrooke and the Laval University to offer an optional course. This course is part of the original SCOI curriculum and therefore requires no additional work. In addition, it allows official recognition of your experience in your university file.

Cost of the Program

The registration fee is $440 including a deposit of $50, in addition to the payment of tuition fees to the student’s respective university. 
The costs include:

  • Reimbursement costs for transport, food, logistics and speakers for the 3 pre-departure trainings and the debriefing session;
  • Telephone costs to contact internship environments abroad and to carry out intra-internship follow-up;
  • Funding of an emergency fund: A fund is set up to quickly send financial resources to a participant or a group facing a health or safety emergency;
  • Funding of the Canadian Immersion Program: part of the registrations will finance the arrival of a health professional from our immersion environments with leadership qualities and an interest in learning health skills in a hospital environment and/or a Quebec university.

Registration with the faculties includes (additional fees):

  • An optional course in your university’s medical program;
  • Additional formalized global health training recorded on your transcript;
  • Liability insurance covering your medical acts in internship settings as well as the equipment you will use as part of your internship.

The fees do not include:

  • Airfare and land transport overseas;
  • Compensation for supervisors and work placements;
  • Purchase of medical equipment (stethoscope, N95 mask, scrubs, etc.);
  • Compensation for host families or accommodation (depending on the internship).

Compulsory Training

Attendance at the three days of pre-departure training and at the debriefing session is compulsory in order to be able to go abroad. If you do not attend all of them, you will not be able to leave with the SCOI program or pass your university course.

Evaluation Method and Feedback

A final internship report and a short text about a theme of global health related to your experience, as well as your gain in intercultural competence are essential to assess the knowledge provided by this course and the quality of the program. The success or failure of the course will be judged based on the completion of these two documents and on the participation in training activities.

For more information

Justine Robillard and Marie-Christine Dubé
Coordinators of the Global Health Clinical Immersion Program SCOI
[email protected]

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