Check out this video from our Outreach in 2018!
Ghana Medical Tour 2019
October 13 - 26, 2019
International Needs Canada is a non-denominational Christian organization with multiple partnerships around the world; dedicated to promoting health, nutrition, education, and community development initiatives. These include child sponsorship, clean water programs, establishment of schools with feeding programs, healthcare and more. Key to the success and sustainability of these initiatives is a strong partnership with the recipient country, and ownership of each initiative BY the recipient country.
Medical outreaches in Ghana’s Volta Region have been ongoing since 2005; collaborations between International Needs Ghana, International Needs Canada, and International Needs USA have resulted in medical teams visiting rural villages and schools almost every 6 months. This year, we are re-establishing Canadian team visits as an integral part of ongoing medical care for rural areas of Ghana, working with Ghana’s ministry of health, local public health officials, and health care practitioners from surrounding communities. Our objective is to visit communities with little access to health care and provide primary care to both the school children and their families, including education, screening, prophylaxis, treatment, and where necessary, referral to a hospital.
Logistics of the Trip
Our dates are set for October 13 – 26, 2019. Our typical program includes one day of orientation and travel into the Volta Region, eight to nine school and community visits and clinics, and one day of relaxation mid-trip, to showcase some of Ghana’s natural beauty. We also ensure you will have some time to shop for souvenirs in the capital city prior to departure.
Clinics are organized within the physical space of the International Needs School in a given community. The older students efficiently clear out the school-desks and set up space for intake (weighing, measuring, prophylaxis); physician consultation, medication distribution, and education. On a given day we may see 200-400 individuals, depending on the size and needs of the community. Joining us will be public health and local nurses, local pharmacists, and Ghanaian physicians. The physicians have been recipients of International Needs’ medical student sponsorship program.
Depending on your area of skill or interest, you will be asked to participate in specific areas. If you are a nurse, you will most likely find the greatest demand for your expertise in the medication administration area. If you are a physician, you will be working in the consultation area (and yes, everyone has a translator as most of the patients do not speak English). If you are an allied health provider (physio, occupational or respiratory therapist, social worker, dietician, etc.) - we can find a role for you too! Just reach out to me! And if you are none of the above but want to do work for two weeks with Ghanaian children and their families, we welcome ‘non medical volunteers’ as well – I have a full (and enjoyable) task list for you too!
Typically, the Canadian contingent consists of 2-4 physicians, 3-4 nurses, and 2-4 allied health providers or general volunteers. I am the team leader and have been involved with the International Needs Medical Outreach since 2008, when I was a first year medical resident, and have since been to Ghana 9 or 10 times. I can’t wait to go back this year!
Cost of the Trip
The cost of the trip for each individual accounts for flights from Toronto, accommodations, transportation and meals in Ghana. Add-on fares available most Canadian cities. Airlines have the option to increase taxes and add fuel surcharges until fares are paid in full. The cost of the trip is $4,200.00. However, the entire sum is tax-deductible and you can claim this on your tax return next year. In addition we need to register new doctors and nurses with the Ghanaian Medical Council, which is a cost of $600 US for doctors and $125 US for nurses per registrant, which is an additional cost. International Needs books all of the flights, accommodations and provides tax receipts for all funds donated. Furthermore, International Needs Canada provides separate fundraising pages on their website for each individual team member so that you can hit up all of your friends and family to support your trip! You will find this information on the website at www.internationalneeds.ca Click on Get Involved, click on Discovery Tours and look for the October 2019 Medical Tour.
Can I bring? . . .
International Needs has a strict policy on gifting and bringing things. It is understandable that participants are well intentioned and therefore inclined to ‘give things’ to the communities they visit. However, International Needs Canada has a strict policy in place, which requires any and all items (gifts, etc.) to be cleared with the organization prior to giving. We are happy to send you a copy of the Gift Policy.
If you have specific questions about certain items, you’re welcome to email me directly, particularly with regards to medical or dental supplies that you may have access to.
Dr. Rebecca Kruisselbrink
- I am happy for you to connect with me via email initially.