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Aubri Carman and Kristen Bratton - Study Abroad in Africa

This summer we had the opportunity to participate in a Child Family Health International program in Durban, South Africa. For four weeks, we spent time at different clinical sites around the city learning about the South African healthcare system and the unique healthcare challenges in the region, including the impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

We began at a large teaching hospital, spending time in both the pediatric and surgical wards. We saw a variety of surgeries, including amputations and fissure repairs, and spent time with many children infected with HIV. We spent a week rotating through several rural clinics, learning about primary care, community outreach, and traditional medicine. We even were able to visit a sangoma, a Zulu witch doctor.

For the last week of our trip, we spent time at a smaller local hospital and were able to assist with live births, observe cesarean sections and spend time in an HIV outpatient clinic.

When we weren’t busy at work, we attended World Cup games, went on safari, visited other areas of the country and enjoyed the hospitality of our homestay family, the Nxeles. The month flew by, and we can’t wait to return again someday!