3 Reasons You Should Consider Becoming A Medical Volunteer
Becoming a medical volunteer is an opportunity to help improve the lives of patients who may live in environments without adequate medical care or ones right in your backyard who are uninsured. There are many advantages for both patient and volunteer when you invest your time and skills.
Reduce Student Loan Debt
Some volunteer programs offer awards or work directly with federal student loans to help reduce loan debt for medical professionals who volunteer their time in specific medical settings. These setting may include local or national programs that offer pro bono services to the uninsured or underinsured, or programs that have sites in other countries.
The rising cost of education, especially ones in the medical field, can be a hindrance to people who wish to purse these careers. Additionally, with some fields of medicine becoming more saturated with new graduates, the income may not be a lucrative as previously thought. The ability to offset some of the cost associated with an advanced education can help you decide whether pursuing a medical education is right for you.
Diversity Of Experiences
The medical field is broad and even people without formal training in medicine may have other education or skills that can be of use. For example, the same volunteer organizations that provides medical services may need people who have a background in public/community health to promote awareness of disease prevention. In many countries, basic sanitation, such as clean water for drinking and handwashing, is still an issue and a major component of disease transmission. Education regarding safe sex practices and prenatal care are among other types of information that would be disseminated by a volunteer with a public/community health background.
Other specialty areas can include dentists and dental hygienists who may be called upon to help with preventative dental care and education regarding good oral hygiene practices. Volunteers with a mental health background can provide mental health screenings or counsel victims of traumas or natural disasters.
Improved Medical Training
If you take on the challenge of working as a medical volunteer in another country, specifically countries without good access to care and technology, you will be a better medical professional when you return home. When you consider specific medical specialties, such as general practice and emergency/trauma, you may be volunteering in an environment where you do not have many resources to diagnose and treat your patients. If you can successful help people in these situations, it is much easier to think on your feet and render care in environments where plenty of supplies and technology are at your disposal.
Volunteering in medical settings is not easy, but the results are rewarding. There are countless medical and related professionals that can benefit from volunteering their time and knowledge to people without access to routine medical care. Talk to a facility, like Twin Lakes Hospice Inc, for more information.