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.

Applying for a travel grant is a two-step process:

  1. Visit the HVO website and click on the "Start the volunteer placement process" on the right side of the page.
  2. After submitting the form on the HVO website, submit the AAD's online travel grant application.

Opportunities for dermatologists experienced in burn or wound care with HVO burn management or wound and lymphedema management programs also may be available.

  • Grant locations

    For more information about any of the dermatology programs below, visit the HVO website.

    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 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 or eligible 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 four 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 two 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. Board-certified or eligible as well as active or retired dermatologists are welcome. Final year residents will be considered. Assignments are two to four weeks.

  • Guidelines
    • Must be an Academy member.
    • Volunteer time must be for a minimum of two weeks.
    • Airfare is up to $2,500 for two volunteers, whether on same or different HVO trip.
    • Airfare is for the Academy member only, not accompanying family or staff.
    • Applicant must have a confirmed assignment with HVO, complete with site selection and dates.
    • Grant is for airfare only, not baggage fees (paid separately at a later time).
    • Grant must be paid out and used in the same year.
    • Airfare must be booked through Academy’s travel agency:

    Association Travel Concepts (ATC)
    Jo Ross, International Specialist
    Phone: 800-458-9383 x1290
    Call between 11 a.m.–7 p.m. (ET), Monday-Friday
    Allow a minimum of 6 weeks notice to book the ticket

  • Volunteer Toolkit
  • Additional resources
    Skin disease cards
      Request hard copies of AAD skin disease education cards to help train non-dermatologists in underserved areas of the world. 
    Portable Projector   Borrow one of the AAD's portable projectors for your next volunteer trip