Physical Therapy Internships in Tanzania - Dar Es Salaam
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Physical Therapy Internships in Tanzania - Dar Es Salaam

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Social Life


  • Health & Safety


  • Work Environment


  • Living Situation


  • Program Administration


  • Internship Placement


You won’t forget it!

I had always wanted to go to Africa, so when the chance to undertake a physical therapy internship there arose, I jumped at the chance.

I ended up choosing Tanzania, and before the trip I had a lot of contact with the Work the World team in the UK. They explained every tiny detail to us, answered any and every question, and totally prepared me for my trip in every imaginable way. I wanted to get the most out of this experience, and Work the World went out of their way to make sure I did.

A member of the Work the World team met us at the airport and took us back to our private accommodation. When we arrived, we got a welcome briefing and a city orientation. It was good to spend our first day with the Work the World team, familiarizing ourselves with the lay of the land and finding out where everything was.

The Work the World house was big, with everything you could need. The team in the house were so welcoming and the catering team cooked us some amazing food. The house had WiFi (and the occasional power cut, which added to the experience of living in a developing country).

Then, it was time for my internship. I spent time both on the wards, and in outpatients. During outpatients, I saw things similar to what I’d seen at home—strokes, fractures, lower back pain... The rationale behind treatment was similar to what I learned, but they didn’t have half as much equipment as we did back home.

My first time on the ward was quite a shock, especially seeing the conditions the patients were in. The sheer number of femur fractures from motorbike accidents was eye-opening. The treatment for fractures was very different to what I had learned; patients were put in traction for six to eight weeks, realigning the bones (with hardly any pain relief). Many patients didn’t speak any English, but physical therapists and nurses were more than happy to translate.

In pediatrics we saw children with fractures, burns, cerebral palsy, and malnutrition. We gave children and mothers advice, showing them different treatment techniques. We also visited a centre for children with cerebral palsy where parents brought their children to get treatment and interact with others. It gave them hope and encouragement, which was so heartwarming to see.

There were lots of activities to do at weekends and the afternoons. We went on a coffee tour, to hot springs, and on safari, which I definitely recommend. It was an incredible experience.

Enjoy yourself, get stuck in, and make the most of your time in Tanzania, you won’t forget it!