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Hospital doctors and physicians

We’re looking for Irish Medical Council registered hospital doctors with at least three years' post-registration experience (ST2), and ideally an MRCPCH.

Roles are generally longer term, ranging from one to two years, but we also have occasional short-term assignments for up to six months.

Specific requirements vary according to each role, but you'll need a solid foundation in a broad range of adult medicine. Teaching, training and management are all central to your VSO roles, so experience in those fields is important. Experience of infectious diseases, tropical medicine or HIV and AIDS is often also desirable.

What you’ll be doing

Preventable diseases cause high levels of mortality and morbidity in many poor countries. Remote or rural communities in particular are often left without adequate care. As a VSO doctor you could help strengthen primary care, improve referral and help widen access to treatment.

Working in a clinic, hospital or healthcare centre, you’ll be improving vital care. You’ll also be teaching and training staff to help them improve and develop their services.

Example placement

Placement for: Hospital doctor

Country: Sierra Leone

Based in Port Loko Government Hospital in Sierra Leone you will be contributing to promoting health service standards in maternal, new born and child health in the hospital and in Peripheral Health Units (PHUs) through training of health workers and on the job coaching and mentoring.

What does the role involve?:

This opportunity is at the Port Loko Government Hospital with the District Health Management Team (DHMT) and administratively under the supervision of local council. For many reasons the health outcomes in the country are still very poor especially at district level because even the organizational structures within these institutions are very weak due to limited resources that have not been managed properly resulting in mismanagement. The volunteer will be contributing to promoting health service standards in maternal, new born and child health in the hospital and in Peripheral Health Units (PHUs) through training of health workers and on the job coaching and mentoring, with the objective to have a real and long term impact on these health systems in Sierra Leone. Key responsibilities include:

  • Work collaboratively with local staff with support from the DHMT through training
  • Carry out on the job coaching and mentoring of the nurses - putting knowledge and skills into practice
  • Introduce WHO guidelines and help to locally adapt and strengthen them
  • Design and implement medical protocols and policies for patient care within the hospital and PHUs
  • Assist the DHMT to monitor service delivery in the district and report back to them directly

Skills, qualifications and experience required

You can apply for this role if you are a fully qualified medical doctor, with at least 3 years of formal post graduate experience with an interest in medical education and experience in internal maternal and child health would be useful. You must be able to deliver on the job training, coaching and mentoring support to hospital and community based nurses to improve maternal and child health and new born birth attendance. Other requirements include basic knowledge about development in a poor or post-conflict country, strong clinical background and training skills, analytical and pro-active problem-solving abilities, good communication and interpersonal skills, ability to deal with experienced and inexperienced medical professionals and a positive and flexible attitude. You should also be prepared to live and work in environment with limited infrastructure and resource.

And the rest...

The Port Loko District is strategically located in the Northern Province of Sierra Leone and has a population of 490,937 and experiences two seasons - rainy and dry seasons. Transport and communication links from central, district and chiefdom levels are appreciable. There are no electricity and internet facilities, for which the population depends on private cell phones and generators, however you can get access through tyour office or in health centres during work hours and can charge the laptops and electrical appliances during the day. The accommodation is provided with a generator. There are shops within the township where purified drinking water are for sale. While on placement, we’ll ask you to commit to 3-6 months to make a sustainable contribution to our development goals. In return, we’ll give you comprehensive financial, personal and professional support. We'll provide you with extensive training including language classes before your placement, and our financial package includes a local living allowance, return flights, accommodation, insurance and more. When you return to your home country, we'll support you to resettle. 

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