The Global Health Program at Universidad de Las Américas [UDLA] strives to be an international leader among academic global health programs, with an ever-widening inter-professional focus on health and well-being.


To promote the health and well-being of communities and their constituents both at home and abroad through academics, inter-professional collaboration, and learning opportunities aimed at enhancing cultural competency and social acuity.

To engage with other universities and organizations for which Global Health is a priority.


To promote a diverse multidisciplinary, inter-professional approach to global health through collaborative relationships between UDLA departments in Health Sciences and other UDLA schools, inter-professional health brigades and other community service activities, leadership and collaboration in projects and research within UDLA, as well as with institutional and organizational partners.

To facilitate student and faculty exchanges with university partners within and outside of Ecuador in clinical and community health rotations. UDLA Global Health facilitates supervised academic learning opportunities for students and faculty who wish to gain global health expertise in urban and rural areas of Ecuador, in order to strengthen language and communication skills and cross-cultural sensitivity, while enhancing their professional skills.

To develop relationships with universities in Ecuador and abroad for which Global Health is a priority; currently Global Health at UDLA has agreements with universities in the United States and Europe.

To share and exchange expertise and conduct research with counterparts nationally and internationally; Global Health collaborates with UDLA Telemedicine, which provides continuing education and support to rural doctors throughout the country.

“Wherever the art of medicine is loved, there is also a love of humanity”.


About Global Health at UDLA

In 2016, UDLA was accredited by the Western Association of Schools & Colleges (WASC, United States), the first and currently only WASC accredited university in Ecuador. Founded in1994, UDLA offers undergraduate, graduate, and technologist degrees with values based on rigorous academics, ethical conduct, and innovation.

In 2015, the Global Health Program was established as a multidisciplinary, inter-professional academic program, the first of its kind in Ecuador. The Global Health program is part of the Faculty of Health Sciences, which includes Medicine, Physical Therapy, Nursing, and Veterinary Medicine. It is distinguished by housing a state of the art 6,ooo Sq. ft. simulated hospital, the Interprofessional Clinical Simulation Center (and its satellite located at a local hospital, Novaclínica Santa Cecilia), the largest and most comprehensive in the country, with a strong Standardized Patient Program.

UDLA´s Global Health Program offers urban and rural learning and experiential opportunities to students, faculty, physicians, researchers, and practicing professionals in all areas of study that intersect with health and well-being. Learning opportunities are supervised activities with direct interaction with Ecuadorian professionals and communities that will allow Global Health participants to gain international experience and cultural competence, enhance their Spanish-language skills, and develop friendships and professional contacts through immersion in Ecuadorian society.

The Global Health program also promotes exchanges for students and faculty from UDLA to universities outside of Ecuador with which UDLA has an agreement. Currently, there are agreements with universities in the United States and Europe for clinical rotations.


UDLA Global Health follows the World Health Organization’s position that “health is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” (Constitution of WHO: principles Promotion of health and well-being involves the health sciences, and beyond, benefiting from the expertise of numerous other fields.

“Be skeptical, ask questions, demand proof. Demand evidence. Don't take anything for granted. But here's the thing: When you get proof, you need to accept the proof. And we're not that good at doing that."

Michael Specter


The Global Health program facilitates supervised learning and experiential opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, residents, fellows, faculty, and practicing professionals, through the Faculty of Health Sciences (Medicine, Physical Therapy, Nursing, Dentistry, and Veterinary Medicine) and other academic departments at Universidad de Las Américas, such as Psychology, Gastronomy, Communications and Visual Arts, Hospitality, Interior Architecture and Design, Political Science and International Relations, and Law and Social Sciences. With the collaboration of deans, directors, and faculty in different schools at UDLA, as well as via partnerships with governmental and non-governmental institutions and agencies, global health opportunities may be possible for a range of professions.

As in conjunction with the International Programs office at UDLA, the university is easily able to receive students and faculty for clinical, community, and public health rotations.

Global Health participants are placed in clinical, community, and public health settings in and around Quito, or in sites 1-3 hours from Quito, in urban and rural settings in the mountain areas, cloud forest region, subtropical zone, and Amazon jungle. Global Health utilizes the network of institutions and organizations that partner with the UDLA Faculty of Health Sciences for externships, internships, brigades, and projects. These include hospitals, clinics, and other installations in the systems of the Ministry of Health, the Social Security system, the City of Quito, private hospitals and clinics, and several non-governmental organizations. Interprofessional health brigades occur periodically throughout the year, within and outside of Quito, and can possibly be incorporated into global health rotations. See list below.

Specific sites will be discussed with each applicant. All rotation activities are conducted under supervision.

Global Health opportunities with UDLA are based on available space and are subject to change. Every attempt will be made to accommodate participants’ interests.

Global Health Options

Medical and Allied Health Clerkships and Observerships in Clinical and Community Medicine and Public Health

Other academic areas with an interest in health: Pre-professional rotations, internships and practicums


  • Health care settings in urban and rural areas in and outside of Quito (see below), typically 4-8 weeks per rotation
  • Clinical Simulation Hospital, UDLA Park Campus and Novaclínica Santa Cecilia; Dentistry Simulation Center, UDLA Colón Campus
  • Health Brigades within and outside of Quito
  • Placement with institutions and organizational partners

“Medicine is not a science; it is empiricism founded on a network of blunders”.

Emmet Densmore

UDLA Global Health locations


Medical and Allied Health Clinical and Community Rotations

Urban sites presently include:

In the city of Quito and surroundings

Project sites with the Municipal government of Quito, including Salud al Paso, a city-wide health promotion project.

Centro de Salud, Centro Histórico, Quito (Central)

A Ministry of Health community clinic in the historic center of Quito

Centro de Salud, Tumbaco

A Ministry of Health community clinic in Tumbaco

Hospital Eugenio Espejo, Quito (Central)

A large, multispecialty public hospital serving the low-income and uninsured population in Quito and surrounding areas. Opened in 1933, the 10-story, 610 bed hospital is adjacent to the original restored hospital buildings that house the History of Medicine Museum.

Hospital Militar, Quito (Central)

A 450 bed, multi-specialty hospital serving the military and the general population

Hospital Vozandes, Quito (North)

Private 60 bed multi-specialty hospital founded in 1955, incorporating values of service and spirituality.

Isidro Ayora Obstetric-Gynological Hospital (Central)

Large public maternity hospital that is part of the Ministry of Public Health system with a history of providing services for over 65 years. Located in the central part of Quito.

Novaclínica Santa Cecilia (Central)

A multi-specialty 60 bed hospital established in 1957, located in the central north area of Quito, featuring a satellite of UDLA´s Clinical Simulation Center, inaugurated in 2018.

Social Security (IESS) Hospitals

Hospital Carlos Andrade Marín, Quito (Central)

Large 7oo+ bed, multi-specialty hospital, part of the Social Security health care system caring for the employed sector and its families, as well as independent workers who become affiliated with the health system.

Hospital del IESS Quito Sur (South)

Opened in December 2017 with an anticipated 324 beds, this multi-specialty hospital serves the southern area of Quito.

Hospital San Francisco, Quito (North)

Opened in December 2011 this multi-specialty hospital has 143 beds, and provides care in the northern sector of the city.


Clínica Hombro a Hombro Global, Santo Domingo de Los Tsáchilas (subtropical zone)

Founded by the University of Kentucky of Kentucky Shoulder-to-Shoulder program, this Community Health Clinic in the subtropical city of Santo Domingo provides clinical and preventive services, including dental healthcare and school based services and school based services to low-income and impoverished surrounding communities. Program sites include the indigenous Tsáchila community. (3 hours from Quito)

Rural sites include:

Hospital de Yaruquí

Newly remodeled and expanded 50 bed community hospital of the Ministry of Public Health, near the Mariscal Sucre (Quito) Airport, serving 200,000 inhabitants of Yaruquí, Cumbayá, Tumbaco, Puembo, Pifo, Tababela, Checa, and El Quinche. (30 minutes from Quito)

Centro de Salud, Nono

Small Ministry of Public Health community health clinic in the mountain town of Nono, on the slopes of Pichincha Volcano, serving an area with vegetation ranging between tropical humid forest and rainy subalpine terrain. (40 minutes from Quito)

Hospital de Nanegalito

Ministry of Public Health community hospital in the rural mountain town of Nanegalito located in the cloud forest area in the foothills of Pichincha Volcano. (2 hours from Quito)

Other Academic areas with an interest in health - Pre-professional Rotations, Internships and Practicums

The site would be coordinated with partner institutions, pending availability.

Additional urban and rural sites may be available.

Inter-professional Health Brigades

Brigades occur periodically throughout the year, within and outside of Quito, and may possibly be incorporated into global health rotations.

“Effort does matter; diligence and attention to the minutest details can save you.”.

Atul Gawande


Undergraduate and graduate students, medical residents and fellows, faculty members, and practicing professionals in all academic areas with an interest in health will be considered for a Global Health rotation, pending site availability. Medical students in years 1 and 2 participate in Observerships and Shadowing; 3rd and 4th year in Clinical Clerkships.

A Global Health applicant is required to have an intermediate or above level of Spanish in order to facilitate a successful global health experience in Ecuador. A tourist level of Spanish is not adequate. An online interview, conducted in English and Spanish, will be scheduled with each applicant prior to being accepted. Verbal Spanish skills will be assessed during the interview (Skype, or otherwise).

Start dates for rotations, practicums, and similar activities are flexible, and take place throughout the year. However it is not recommended that students begin their global health internship during the period between December 1 – January 15.

Applicants should submit the application and supporting materials at least three months in advance of the desired start date.

Click Here, for the application and list of required documents.

Program costs

Tuition and Administrative Fee

Tuition cost depends on the type of agreement that UDLA has with the participant’s home university or institution. The administrative fee and tuition is waived for participants from universities with a bilateral exchange agreement. Please contact your university´s international office to determine if your university has an agreement with UDLA.

For independent applicants and those from universities with non-bilateral agreements with UDLA, contact the Global Health Program at for current costs. Payment should be made prior to beginning activities at UDLA, at the cashier´s office.

Accommodations and Transportation

Upon request, the International Programs office at UDLA can assist with arranging accommodations.

Accommodations and Transportation

Upon request, the International Programs office at UDLA can assist with arranging accommodations

Participants are expected to cover their transportation costs. Public transportation options include bus, trolleybus, and taxi.
Contact at the UDLA International Programs Office for assistance with:

  • Airport transportation from the Mariscal Sucre International Airport
  • Housing arrangements
  • Local transportation and other logistics

UDLA does not provide the following items; these are the responsibility of each Global Health participant:

  • Airline ticket (Participants must make their own flight arrangements.)
  • Housing and Housing costs
  • Passport and/or visa and their cost
  • Vaccinations - check with your medical provider
  • Food, unless meals are included in the housing arrangements
  • Wi-Fi and Laundry, unless included in housing arrangements
  • Transportation within Ecuador
  • International health insurance
  • Insurance for student/professional practice (malpractice insurance)
  • Souvenirs, entertainment, telephone and internet access charges and other personal expenses


We look forward to seeing you at UDLA!

Stephanie Gabela, MPH, RDN, Director - Global Health

Experienced in the multidisciplinary approach to health care and health promotion; Collaborator in designing UDLA´s Global Health Program; Works closely with the Dean of Medicine, and other Deans, Directors, Coordinators, and Faculty members to design, manage, facilitate and monitor global health activities. Nutrition faculty at UDLA. Member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (USA)

Victoria Corral - UDLA Global Health Liaison, International Programs

Manages logistics, orientation, and support of international students and faculty

For more information, contact UDLA Global Health at

First Name:

Last Name:


Phone Number:

How did you learn about us?

Application File


Av. de los Granados y Colimes. Quito-Ecuador