Fiji Medical

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1. In Brief

The Fijian archipelago lies scattered lazily in the achingly blue waters of the Pacific Ocean, bathed in the radiant antipodean sunlight. Its towns and villages are veritable melting pots of cultural influences.

Fiji's irresistible shores are fringed with picture-perfect palm trees, and the azure waters that surround the islands are inhabited by an astonishing array of marine creatures; over 1,200 species of fish including clownfish, triggerfish, blue tangs, 10 species of shark, 12 species of whales, dolphins, turtles, anemones, soft coral and much more.

Enjoy fragrant sun drenched days and warm nights of delectable food cooked in a traditional underground oven. Fiji will enchant you with its infectious, chilled out "Fiji time" lifestyle, its heavenly beaches and surrounding mountains of rainforest– the perfect paradise location for your Frontier adventure! 

 

  

  

 

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Visit this irresistible tropical paradise and gain valuable medical work experience
  • Make lifelong friends with your new healthcare colleagues
  • Make a difference to the health and welfare of the Fijian communities

PROJECT REQUIREMENTS

  • Intermediate level of English required
  • All placements are dependent upon the submission of an up-to-date CV and proof of medical qualifications.

FAST FACTS

Location Viti Levu, Fiji
Activities Shadow doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers in the field
Raise awareness within communities of critical medical and health related issues
Assist with medical outreach programmes addressing family planning and HIV/AIDS
Assist with patient care and record vital signs 
Work in hospital laboratories, assist with medical administration
Transport Airport pickup (subject to arrival date)
Accommodation Homestay (hostel upgrade available at extra cost)

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

Pre-departure support
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Equipment advice
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt

 

In-country Airport pickup & transfer to Suva (subject to arrival date)
Two meals per day
Basic accommodation (hostel upgrade available at extra cost)
Local orientation and training 
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ back-up
In-country transfers subject to start date

 


 

QUALIFICATIONS

A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.

PADI DIVE TRAINING

On the Frontier Marine Conservation Group Projects, we will train you to PADI Advanced Open Water before you begin undertaking important biological surveys. Depending on how long you spend on the project, you may also have the option to take further courses up to Divemaster!

Please see the "Dates and Costs" tab for dive qualification prices or ask your volunteer advisor for more information.

Find out more about PADI qualifications.

2. The project

WHAT WILL I BE DOING?

This is a fantastic opportunity for medical students and those interested in the medical field to develop hands-on experience and learn about the running of community hospitals and medical clinics in Fiji.

As a Frontier medical volunteer you will spend your time undertaking a variety of different tasks under the mentorship of medical and healthcare professionals from a private hospital on the outskirts of Suva City. 

The hospital where you will be placed consists of a specialist skin clinic, rehabilitation wards for spinal injury and strokes, a physiotherapy centre and a prosthetics workshop. You will have the opportunity to observe the work done in each of these areas and, depending on your interest and experience, you may have the opportunity to specialise.  

Depending on the ward your work could include things like: assisting chronic patients in day to day living, helping patients in their rehabilitation and physiotherapy programmes, taking out-patient details and giving wellness talks in the specialist skin clinic, accompanying nurses on patient home visits to assess disability needs, or training patients to use new prosthetic limbs. 

You will be shadowing doctors, nurses or other healthcare workers as they go about delivering services in the local health clinic. You may also be assisting with medical screening programmes, preparing dressings, assisting with drips and eliminations, raising local awareness, and recording vital signs. 

Along with assisting patients, there will also be the opportunity to accompany doctors and nurses on outreach programmes visiting rural and disadvantaged areas. This could include assisting with skin disease screening at an orphanage or jail, visiting a disabled patient at home for an assessment, or conducting a T.B screening in rural disadvantaged areas of the island or outer islands. The types of outreach and locations vary each month. 

By assisting in the care of patients and contributing to the hospital's outreach work, volunteers can make a real difference to the care of sick people in Fiji and contribute to promoting health awareness amongst the general population. 

Your placement will be tailor-made for you and will reflect your previous work experience, interests, and skills while taking into account the changing needs and priorities of the clinic areas to which you are attached. We recommend staying for at least four weeks to allow you to gain the most comprehensive experience and make a lasting impact. 

You will be offered a warm Fijian style welcome by your new colleagues who will be keen to greet enthusiastic and eager volunteers. You will be warmly embraced and then rushed off your feet! The key to your success will depend on how much you are willing to contribute and how hard you are able to work. With an open mind and flexible attitude you will enjoy an experience to remember, make friends for life, and gain valuable work experience on important health-related programmes. 

All placements are dependent upon the submission of an up-to-date CV and proof of medical qualifications and medical work experience.

3. What to expect

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?

Free airport pick up is provided for volunteers arriving on the first Monday of the month. If you arrive before 2:30pm you will be welcomed by a Frontier representative at the airport and will be transferred by bus from the airport along the coral coast to Suva (approx. 4 hours). If you arrive after 2:30pm your transport costs will still be included but it may not be possible for a representitive to meet you, however, you will be given clear and easy to follow instructions telling you how to reach Suva, where you will be met off the bus.

If you are arriving on any other day, no problem, we can either arrange your airport pickup for a small extra cost or we can provide easy to follow instructions for you to make these arrangements yourself.  Please inform us of your arrival details and your preferences as soon as possible (and at least 1 week before arrival) so we can make the necessary arrangements for you and help your journey to your project be as smooth as possible.

 

WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?

Your home in Fiji will be a comfortable and welcoming homestay with a hospitable Fijian family giving you a true sense of the Fijian culture and way of life. Your family will welcome you as one of their own, and your evenings will be filled with hide-n-go-seek or movie nights with the children, and interesting conversations over kava with your older siblings and host parents.

While most volunteers reflect on their homestay experience as one of the most meaningful aspects of their project, you can also opt to stay in a simple and comfortable lodge near the centre of Suva for an additional cost of US$126 a week. Here you will be in a single sex dorm with access to a kitchen, TV, garden, sun deck, laundry service (10 FJD for 1 bag), cold showers, and linen.

 

WHAT WILL I BE EATING?

In the homestay, you'll be able to sample Fijian home-cooked meals which will be prepared for you by your host family. A common breakfast is toast with butter and tea with milk, though some volunteers will purchase eggs, rolled oats, fresh fruit, or coffee to complement their breakfast. Common dinners include vegetable curry with rice, lamb sausage with chips, fried noodles with vegetables, and stewed ro ro with tuna and cassava. A delicious Fijian speciality is a lovo feast, which is a meal cooked in a hole in the ground – unusual but very tasty.

If you are in the lodge you will prepare your own breakfast and dinner each day using supplies purchased for you by the in-country staff.

 

HOW WILL I GET TO WORK?

Transport from your accommodation to your place of work each day will be by local bus, taxi (cost not included) or foot. Suva is easy to navigate, and on a beautiful day you’ll find yourself purposefully taking the longer route in order to stroll along the breathtaking sea wall or catch glimpses of Suva harbor from higher points around the city.

4. The reviews

FIJI HAS BEEN EXCELLENT FROM THE WORD GO (OR BULA!)  | 30 Apr 2012
My time is Fiji has been excellent from the word go (or Bula)!  I am staying with a lovely h...

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Making a real difference on the Fiji Medical Project  | 26 Nov 2010
Our 20 week FJMe volunteer Camilla is getting stuck in and helping the Red Cross set up their new...

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Loving every minute in Fiji  | 11 Nov 2010
I’ve been living in Fiji for a month now, and even though it feels like I’ve been liv...

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Enjoying 'Fiji Time'  | 11 Oct 2010
So, after a week of “being Fijian” and living with my family, I have begun to feel a ...

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Fiji - Unforgettable  | 2 Aug 2010
Although the locals tend to chill and do things on “Fiji time”, my time here has gone...

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1 week in...  | 19 Jul 2010
I arrived at Nadi airport to meet my fellow volunteers and began the 3 and ½ hour crazy fa...

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It’s over for now, but I will return!  | 12 Jul 2010
WORK: A day on the medical project began at 8am in the Biochemistry Pathology Laboratory at the l...

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Fiji Science Update  | 24 Jun 2009
Another successful phase for the science with all Baseline Survey Protocol (BSP) sites achieved w...

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5. Gallery

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6. Extras

ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

In your spare time you can enjoy the spectacular scenery and beautiful beaches and go snorkelling in the clear blue waters of Pacific harbour, just a bus ride away. Whatever you do you'll be amazed at the Pacific Islanders' tremendous hospitality and culture. You'll quickly make friends as you play rugby, netball, and other sports with the villagers.

You can take part in traditional ceremonies, learn Fijian cooking, and learn how to weave hats in the local style, visit the hot springs or take a scuba diving course. There is also the opportunity to trek in the nearby rainforest, and bathe in natural waterfall lagoons. Please note that these activities cost extra and we encourage you to book them direct with local providers helping to support the local economy.

Nausautoka Village Visit – Day / Weekend Trip

If you want to experience the real rural peaceful and humbling side of Fiji, outside of the City, then Frontier Fiji have a new optional once in a life time cultural excursion available for you!

Visit Nasautoka village, roughly 2 hours north of Suva, where the local community will welcome you with open arms and big smiles, including a traditional performance of a village song and dance! Be treated to the Fijian way of life; experience how they live totally self sufficiently, off the land that surrounds them.

This village trip is available as a day excursion or a weekend trip. A minumum of 4 volunteers need to book for a day trip to be scheduled. This can be booked with your Project Coordinator in country.

A day trip pragramme will include a selection of the following:

Traditional village song and dance

Bamboo Rafting across the Rewa River – don't forget to bring your swimming trunks!

A mountain hike / trek to a spectacular view– walking boots essential

Traditional prawn fishing in the Rewa River

Followed by the traditional Lovo / Bamboo cooking of the prawns – where a Fijian feast will subsequently be laid out for you to indulge! (at extra cost)

Home-stay option (for weekend trip – at extra cost)

A breakdown of costs:

Transport to and from Nasautoka village FJD25 / 9GBP / 15USD (minimum 4 person)

Village Donation FJD10 / 3.50GBP / 6.50USD

Fijian Feast Lunch FJD10 FJD10 / 3.50GBP / 6.50USD

A day out for no more than FJD45 – a unique experience at a bargain price!

Home-stay option of FJD20 per night – this way you will get to do all the activities available over two days, or more!

 

Rest & Recuperation Weekend UPGRADE

Treat yourself and spend your final weekend in Fiji in the lap of luxury with our special R & R weekend upgrade. You can book and pay in country with your Project Coordinator for the special Frontier discount price of US$29/$35FJD per night.

This weekend upgrade facilities include:

Breakfast

Beach front accommodation

150m beach with hammocks and loungers

Popular beach bar with the cheapest beer on the coast on tap & a double happy hour

Swimming pool

Hot showers

Pool and table tennis room

TV lounge

Internet lounge

Free Wifi  

Free activities including sea kayak hire, coconut weaving and jewellery making and beach volley ball

Optional extras include: snorkel trip with kit US$13; bush trek to local waterfalls US$8; beach horse ride US$21; massage US$17 per hour;  2.5 hour surf lesson US$63 

Lunch and dinner is not included and meals cost between US$6 an US$15

Modern conveniences

Suva

  • Banks / ATMs; ANZ bank, Westpac bank
  • Bars / cafes
  • Bureau de Change
  • Cinema
  • Dentist
  • Department store
  • Hospital
  • Internet cafe
  • Laundry services
  • Mobile phone shop
  • Pay phones
  • Pharmacy
  • Post office
  • Supermarkets
  • Traditional markets and cafes
  • Western style restaurants
  • Western Union

7. Dates and Costs

COSTS

2 weeks US$2,295

3 weeks US$2,545

4 weeks US$2,745

5 weeks US$3,145

6 weeks US$3,545

7 weeks US$3,995

8 weeks US$4,395

9 weeks US$4,695

10 weeks US$4,995

20 weeks US$8,045

Extra week US$445

US$126 / $100 per week extra to upgrade to hostel accommodation

DEPARTURE DATES

Monthly

DURATION

4 weeks and longer

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

  • Pre-departure support
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Equipment advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt

In-country

  • Airport pickup & transfer to Suva (subject to start dates)
  • Two meals per day
  • Accommodation (hostel upgrade available at extra cost)
  • Local orientation
  • Project briefing
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ back-up
  • In-country transfers subject to start date

AIRPORT INFORMATION

Nearest airport(s): Nadi (NAN)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

Flights

Flights are not included in our trip costs. However, we have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with us. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact our dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .

Visas

For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.

Insurance

You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.


LEGAL STATEMENT
Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

8. How to apply

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.


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