Community and Public Health

Community and Public Health in Ecuador


Summer 2018: May 18-June 2, 2018 

  Directed by:
  Tania B. Basta, Ph.D., MPH,    CHES.

  Application Deadline
  February 1, 2018

Application coming soon!

Program Summary

This program is designed for CHSP and OU-Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine students who are interested in learning about global public and community health issues; however,  the program is open to all undergraduate or graduate students from Ohio University.    Activities may involve: public health needs assessment, intervention development, health service delivery observation, and cross-cultural comparisons. Non-credit option available.

Program Description

Students who participate in this program will have experiences including but not limited to:

  • Benefit from experiential learning designed to introduce students to the major public health issues (tropical, infectious, and chronic) in rural and urban Ecuador, the structure of the Ecuadorian public and private health systems, the priority health needs of various Ecuadorian communities, the cultural factors impacting Ecuadorian health, and the Ecuadorian public health response.

  • Observe health services at free rural clinics and at public and private Ecuadorian hospitals in the Amazon and Andes region, including native natural medicine.

  • Develop cross-cultural understanding through interaction with Ecuadorian health professionals, students, and community members.

ITDI Video

Dates: May 18-June 2, 2018

Open to OU-Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine and College of Health Sciences and Professions students in good standing (HCOM) or at least a 3.0 overall GPA for graduate students and 2.5 for undergraduate students.  However, the program is open to all undergraduate or graduate students from Ohio University.  Non-credit option available. Please check the  Policy on Judicial Standing for Study Abroad Participants.

Excursions will include visits to cultural sites in Ecuador

Living Arrangements
Lodging will be in economy hostels or motels.  In Quito meals will take place at local restaurants.  In the field, breakfast, snack, lunch and dinner will be prepared by local personnel in the communities. 

Program Fees

Undergraduate Student Budget   (Note: this budget worksheet is for 2017; subject to change for 2018)

Medical Student Budget    (Note: this budget worksheet is for 2017; subject to change for 2018)

Courses and Credit

   HLTH 4930  4 CR

 HLTH 6930  4 CR
Sample Itinerary 

(Sample of activities that have been done in the past; subject to change)

S i te Day Activity DATE Lodging Location
Quito 1 Arrival - transfer to a Hotel near Catholic University (Casa Helbling) Friday, July 14, 2017 Casa Helbling 

4 nights
2 Teleferico  Saturday, July 15, 2017  
Afternoon Tour in the Old City - City Museum Quito
3 Guyasamin - Vozandes private hospital tour Sunday, July 16, 2017 Quito
4 CISeAl visit - meet with Mario's students for summative experience Monday, July 17, 2017 Quito
Tena 5 Drive to Tena (3.5 hours) Tuesday, July 18, 2017 Los Yuztos (2 nights) Tena
6 Visit public health clinic and traditional birth attendants Wednesday, July 19 2017 Tena
Machacuyacu 7 Night in Machacuyacu - learn about natural healing/herbs in rainforest Thursday, July 20, 2017 Family stay in Amazon (1 night) Amazon
Banos 8 Machacuyacu to Banos (3.5 hours) - Pailon del diablo waterfall visit Friday, July 21, 2017 Hosteria in Banos (1 night) Banos
Banos to Quito 9 Leave Banos for Quito airport flight to Manta - stay in Bahia Saturday, July 22, 2017 Hosteria in Bahia Bahia
Quito to Manta 10 Free day at the beach  Sunday, July 23, 2017 Hosteria in Bahia

3 nights
Bahia 11 Needs assessment/touring earthquake devastation Monday, July 24, 2017 Bahia
12 Needs assessment/meeting with stakeholders Tuesday, July 25, 2017 Bahia
13 Bahia to Mindo (3-4 hours) Wednesday, July 26, 2017 Mindo Hosteria at Chocolate Company Mindo
14 Mindo Thursday, July 27, 2017 Mindo
Tena to Otavalo 15 Mindo to Otavalo (Jambi Huasi clinic visit) Friday, July 28, 2017 Hosteria in Otavalo Otavalo
Otavalo - Quito 16  Otavalo Indian Market, equator stop - night flight home Saturday, July 29, 2017 Otavalo - Aereopuerto
Otavalo - Quito 18  Otavalo Indian Market, equator stop - night flight home Saturday, July 30, 2017 Otavalo - Aereopuerto


Map of proposed itinerary:

Ecuador map


Actions Required: How to Apply

Application Deadline: February 1, 2018


  1. Complete the on-line application at                 

  2. Follow the  program checklist  through the rest of the application process.   

  3. Students will be notified of their nomination to the program after the application deadline. Once nominated students will accept (or decline) their nomination in GOIS and if accepting pay the required  non-refundable deposit of $500 within 2 weeks  of the acceptance. Instructions will be sent to you regarding how to pay this deposit through GOIS and in email.The deposit will be applied to the overall program costs and deducted from your bill.

  4. Additional requirements after accepting the nomination include, registering your plans with the U.S. Department of State STEP program, enrolling in the International Health Insurance, and uploading your passport information and flight itinerary through the online application system. 

  5. You must also provide documentation of CDC required immunizations for Ecuador and a copy of the results of a TB test completed within 2 months of travel.  This document is sent to the Global health Office at E118 Grover Center. 

    All fees will be posted to your Ohio University Student Account (You WILL NOT receive an invoice by mail) and be due in May prior to departure. 

  6. All fees (including the $150 administrative fee) will be posted to your Ohio University Student Account (You WILL NOT receive an invoice by mail) and be due prior to departure in Mid-May to Early June.

Funding opportunities:
  1. OU-Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine STUDENTS can apply to 
    Global Health Travel Awards

  2. All participants can apply to the  ITDI Student Travel Award

  3. OU Students can apply to the  Office of Global Opportunities Funding Awards

Contact Information:

Tania B. Basta, Ph.D., MPH, CHES                                   Office of Global Health Programs                                                               Grover Center E118
(740)593-4681                                                                  (740)593-2359


Useful Information:

Podcast series about the ITDI project
A series of 10 podcasts showcasing the different activities within the program.

What to bring
A list of suggested supplies, clothing and other items.

Travelers Health Information
Vaccinations required, anti-malaria prophylaxis, etc.

Logistics and Safety
ITDI programs have an excellent safety record. See details about the logistical arrangements, email access, etc.

Guidelines for Ethical Practice
The OHIO-Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine has adopted the AAMC’s “Guidelines for Premedical and Medical Students Providing Patient Care During Clinical Experiences Abroad”.

Other resources

Ecuador Links
Information about Ecuador: News and Media, Tourism, Cities, Culture, etc.

Infectious Disease Links
Information about protozoan, bacterial, Viral diseases and relevant organizations

Health and Safety
  Ohio University Office of Education Abroad suggests you follow the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control for healthy travel to your destination: . Please familiarize yourself with these recommendations and requirements prior to applying to a program. 

Refer to the State Department site for information related to safety and security at this destination: .
Entry and Exit Requirements

U.S. citizens are required to have a valid U.S. passport when traveling outside of the United States. If you plan to study or travel abroad in the next year, apply for your passport now: .

It is each student’s individual responsibility to determine the entry and exit requirements specific to their personal situation. Some countries also require a visa to legally enter and reside in the country. The following information will hold true for most US passport holders. Entry and exit requirements for this country can be found at . US citizens do not need a visa or other special documents to enter the country for the length of this program. Please also note that visa requirements may vary if you plan to stay in the country longer than the program dates, if you have recently visited the country, or if you plan to travel to other countries during or after the program. Please familiarize yourself with these recommendations and requirements prior to applying to a program in order to determine your appropriate course of action.

For more specific visa related information please visit OGO’s  Visa Information Page

Information for NON-US citizens can be found  here .