This course was offered through UNMC’s Departments of Anesthesiology and Pediatrics for first- and fourth-year medical students interested in global health.
In 2015, Andrew Patterson, MD, and Megan Chacon, MD, of the UNMC Department of Anesthesiology traveled to Gitwe, Rwanda, to meet with physicians at Gitwe Hospital and explore the opportunity of a surgical, clinical, and educational program. Through that meeting, the Rwanda elective program was created, and the first student trip occurred in October 2016.
Through the program, students participated in hospital rounds and visited rural community health centers, as well as participated in obstetric care. The experience immersed students in the health care system of Rwanda, focusing specifically on rural, low-resource environments. The primary goal was to encourage students to integrate international health care into their career. Gitwe Hospital is a small district hospital serving eight health centers in the Ruhango District. Students also spent time at the University of Kigali Teaching Hospital (CHUK) in the capital city of Kigali. CHUK offers greater choice in specialty elective rotation and a more academic teaching environment.