Health Volunteers Overseas

The Academy works with Health Volunteers Overseas (HVO) to match interested dermatologists with overseas volunteer opportunities. Through this program, volunteers train local health care providers, giving them the knowledge and skills to make a difference in their own communities. They generally volunteer for one month, although shorter and longer assignments are possible.

The following testimonials paint a picture of the volunteer experience:
"My stay in Cambodia was short but it was a remarkable educational experience. Truly, I felt that I benefited more than anything I could have contributed to the clinic myself. I saw an eye-opening breadth of dermatologic disease which could not be approached in the United States, and through my interactions with the Cambodian physicians, patients, and people of all walks of life, I learned a great deal about the Cambodian people and their culture."

— Juliette Lee, MD, Cambodia

"My experience was tremendously enriched by the presence of the students. I loved working with them. They were enthusiastic, eager to learn and interested about the United States. My heart is bigger for having worked with them."

— Jessica Kirk, MD, Cambodia

For more information, visit the HVO website or click on the opportunities listed below: 

  • Phnom Penh, Cambodia — National Dermatology Course and Preah Kossamak Hospital
    Volunteers assist in the training of dermatology students, provide continuing education regarding current and new trends of dermatologic diagnosis and treatment, and provide training to nurses and physicians involved in dermatologic care. Volunteers must be board-certified or eligible and hold a current license to practice dermatology.  Active or retired dermatologists and final-year residents are recruited. Assignments are two to three weeks.
  • San Jose, Costa Rica — University of Costa Rica
    Volunteers assist in improving the academic dermatologic residency program through week-long, concentrated courses on various dermatologic topics. The volunteer schedule includes one to two hours of lecture time per day, attending ward rounds, and observing in clinic. Volunteers must be board-certified with a current license. Retired volunteers are considered. In addition to general dermatologists, sub-specialists in dermatopathology and dermatologic surgery are welcome. This site is not appropriate for residents. Assignments are one to three weeks.
  • Mbarara, Uganda — Mbarara University of Science and Technology
    Volunteers provide training and support of the dermatology residency program at the Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST). Volunteers also provide training to medical students, general medical officers (general practitioners), clinical officers (physician assistants), and nurses. Active or retired dermatologists are welcome. Final-year residents may be considered for assignments. Assignments are three to four weeks.
  • Hue, Vietnam — Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy
    Volunteers provide clinical and didactic instruction to update and broaden the skills and knowledge of the dermatology faculty at Hue University of Medicine and Pharmacy in a variety of diagnostic and treatment techniques, as well as work to develop nursing guidelines for skin diseases.
Opportunities for dermatologists experienced in burn or wound care with HVO burn-management or wound- and lymphedema-management programs also may be available.