At a glance
- This project takes place outside of a hospital environment, focusing on vulnerable communities in the Cebu province and in a rural health unit.
- Work with doctors and nurses to do basic health checks during home visits and outreaches.
- Support staff across multiple departments and experience medical work in various different settings.
16 or over
Is this Public Health placement in the Philippines right for me?
This project is ideal for anyone looking to pursue a career in healthcare. You’ll gain gain hands-on experience conducting basic health checks. You’ll work alongside medical professionals on a daily basis, who will offer you guidance and supervision.
Use this experience in the Philippines to add some practical work experience to your CV. Talking about what you learned during your internship in interviews will also give you an extra edge. Gaining public health work experience in the Philippines is also great for students interested in applying for medical school.
You don’t need any prior experience. We’ll teach you everything you need to know.
Our Public Health internships in the Philippines run year-round and require you to participate for a minimum of one week. We encourage you to stay longer, so you can see and learn as much as possible.
What will I do as a Public Health intern in the Philippines?
Joining our Public Health Internship in the Philippines is a great way to gain practical experience in basic healthcare outside of a hospital environment. Here are some of the tasks you’ll help out with
- Join ambulance crews to do health checks for families in their homes and supporting immunization drives
- Support Physiotherapists giving stretches and exercises to patients
- Shadow laboratory and pharmacy staff
- Provide emotional support to mental health patients
- Join staff working at a rural birthing and maternal program
- Assist dentists with their equipment and patients
Your work will focus on the following areas:
Conduct screening outreaches
As a Public Health intern in the Philippines, you will help us do house-to-house surveys and screenings. You will conduct basic medical checks for families, such as temperature, pulse rate, blood pressure, and weight. Blood sugar or cholesterol level tests may also be included.
Shadow medical staff across different departments
You will have the opportunity to observe and learn from medical experts and professionals across multiple departments. Note down patient records, check symptoms and take vital signs during consultations. Support women during births and with pre/post-natal needs. Learn basic stretches and exercises to assist physiotherapists. Discover the methods used by laboratory technicians to diagnose and treat patients. Help label, sort and dispense drugs with pharmacists. Learn to sterilize dental tools and join dental screening programmes in the community.
Raise awareness about healthcare, nutrition and hygiene
During these home visits, you’ll also talk to the family about making healthy lifestyle choices. Being in a familiar setting helps them feel more comfortable with receiving basic medical advice.
Record, analyze, and report data
Recording, analyzing, and reporting on your findings with your programme coordinators is an important part of your internship.
You will use a database to record all patient details, which can then be used to refer back to information collected at previous consultations. Follow up and evaluation of intervention is completed after each visit. This helps us track and monitor long-term outcomes through our Global Impact Database.
Where will I be working in the Philippines?
Home to Cebu’s longest coastline and clear, cobalt blue waters, it’s any ocean-lover’s destination. Immerse yourself in this little slice of paradise during your free time over weekends and after work.
You’ll also work in disadvantaged communities with limited access to healthcare services.
A typical day as a Public Health intern in the Philippines
A typical day will run from about 8am to 5pm, with an hour and a half set aside for lunch.
You will normally start your day by meeting your fellow interns, supervisor, and coordinators at the office. From there, you will set out for your morning house visits or join staff in your allocated department for the day. You will shift departments based on the workload and support needed each day.
If you’re working close to your host family’s home, you can head home for lunch and a bit of a rest. On days you’re working in communities further away, you will get a packed lunch.
You will also get one day a week to record, analyze and report on findings along with coordinators and inputting this information into our Global Impact Database. Some time can also be set aside to create educational presentations or attend skill improvement workshops.
What are the aims and impacts of this project?
There are two main aims of this project: to help you develop your skills and to help improve the overall health of disadvantaged communities.
Our Public Health Project focuses on a healthy lifestyle programme, which aims to reduce the occurence of non-communicable diseases. These include diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. According to the Department of Health in the Philippines, these diseases account for seven out of the ten leading causes of death. Poor nutrition, smoking, drug and alcohol abuse also contribute to the the prevalence of non-communicable diseases.
As a Public Health intern, you can help address these issues by helping us conduct house-to-house surveys and screenings. You will also be able to use this time to educate families on healthy lifestyle choices.
What’s more, you’ll also be gaining invaluable professional experience. We want to equip you with the knowledge and practical skills to pursue a career in healthcare. You’ll have medical professionals with you during outreaches, giving you the chance to learn from them and ask questions.
We have identified five goals in our Medical Management Plan for the Philippines. These are to:
- Encourage an understanding of medical practices and promote an exchange of medical knowledge
- Promote awareness of non-communicable diseases
- Improve the quality of specialised or alternative healthcare provided
- Improve the quality of healthcare provided to patients
- Improve hygiene standards
Help us achieve these long-term goals by joining us as a Public Health intern in the Philippines.
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.
Food and accommodation
You'll stay with a host family in Bogo City. They will welcome you into their home, eager to share their customs and have you teach them about your own culture. We believe that this is the best way to immerse yourself in the culture of the Philippines and have a truly unique experience.
We will always try to let you live alongside at least one other Projects Abroad volunteer or intern at the same host family. Your room will be modest, but comfortable, clean, and safe.
Your programme fee includes three meals a day.
Find out more about our accommodation.
Leisure activities and free time
The Philippines is made up of over 7,000 islands, so naturally there are some beautiful beaches where you can relax during your free time. However, there are plenty of other activities to keep you busy during your trip.
With white-sand beaches come all the exciting activities associated with living close to the sea. You can go snorkelling through the pristine waters, play volleyball, or relax on the sand as the sun sets.
In Cebu City itself, you can explore the traditional Carbon Market. For an insight into the country’s history, you can visit Fort San Pedro and Magellan's Cross. Here, you’ll learn more about the Spanish conquest.
The Spanish influence is also felt in the regular fiestas and street parades held in the Philippines. If you volunteer around the end of January, you’ll even get to experience the Sinulog Festival, a nine day Mardi Gras-style party.
With so many volunteers joining us throughout the year, there will likely be other volunteers in the Philippines during your trip. You can connect with them and explore as a group or travel 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 the Philippines
Not quite what you’re looking for?
Take a look at the following pages where you'll find collections of similar projects:
Gain practical work experience and build your CV in areas such as Business, Medicine, and Journalism.