Nadia spent 4 weeks with Child Family Health International (CFHI) in Cordoba, Argentina this past summer 2018! CFHI is an NGO that provides community-based Global Health Education Programs for students and institutions.
Nadia’s experience in Argentina included clinical rotations at a general hospital in San Roque, situated outside of the city. Before beginning their rounds for the day, Nadia and the physicians would discuss each patient. After visiting each patient, she would watch the physicians update charts and fill out new prescriptions. Nadia’s time with these physicians allowed her to become familiar with patient interactions as well as the daily responsibilities of the profession.
Nadia relates that while the experience was great, there were some challenges:
“During my field experience I encountered a language barrier. Some of the physicians I worked with knew English but most did not. Many of them would ask me to stock supplies or hand them certain dressings for a patient. Some of the time it felt like a guessing game because I was still learning medical terms in Spanish but soon after I became familiar with the terms and was able to give the doctors what they needed without hesitating”
While most of Nadia’s time was spent on work or education-related activities, in her free time she and other students in the program would eat at a new restaurant every day and explore the region. Their travels to neighboring cities and villages provided them with further opportunities to learn more about the local culture. Nadia and her friends traveled to Mendoza, the wine capital of Argentina, and a small German village outside Cordoba where they hiked and enjoyed German cuisine. She relates that these moments allowed her to develop meaningful and valued friendships that she is unlikely to forget.
Nadia is especially grateful to her host family for welcoming her so warmly. One of her favorite memories is when they would all sit down to have dinner together. She remembers a particularly touching gesture by them:
“They took me to an amusement park and I was able to go on some rides with my host sister. It was nice because it was a day that they planned on spending together and they wanted me to be a part of that.”
Nadia plans to focus her future global health experiences on low-income families, and use her experiences in Argentina to compare similarities and differences between health delivery in each country.