Electives and Internships
Mnazi Mmoja is the main hospital on the archipelago of Zanzibar. It is located at the Mnazi Mmoja area just outside Stone Town, the historic centre of Zanzibar Town.
At Mnazi Mmoja, clinical elective students can choose between the following wards: Paediatrics (there are two wards, one for children from 0-3 years old and one from 3-12 years old), Gynaecology, Internal Medicine (Gastrology, Cardiology, Pulmonology, Nephrology), Surgery, Dermatology, Dental, Intensive Care Unit, HIV-Ward, Leprosy Ward (those interested in the leprosy ward need proof of vaccination against tuberculosis), Neurosurgery, Radiology, ENT, Ophthalmology, Acupuncture, Emergency Services, Physio and Occupational Therapy. For students of pharmaceutics, it is also possible to do a clinical elective in the hospital's pharmacy.
The hospital employs 16 specialist physicians, 10 general practitioners, 20 assistant physicians and 30 clinical officers (which is a term used in East Africa for qualified and licensed medical personnel that carry out general medical tasks such as diagnosis and treatment of diseases and injuries, instruction and evaluation of medical screenings, carrying out small standard surgery, and referral of patients to specialists).
Mnazi Mmoja, Mental Hospital and Mwembeladu Maternity Hospital have a total capacity of 510 beds; out of which 64 beds are in the Internal Medicine ward.
The department of occupational therapy has a focus on (but is not limited to) children who have neurological disorders.
Mnazi Mmoja has been running a successful elective program for foreign students for many years.
The reason for the existence of this ward is the strong connection between the People's Republic of China and Zanzibar which started in the times when Zanzibar was still a socialist country. The acupunture department was started by the Chinese government and still today a Chinese acupuncture specialist is permanently present. Several Tanzanians have been trained in acupuncture and are working at Mnazi Mmoja Hospital.
Placements are possible for participants who want to learn about acupuncture as well as for specialists for whom the application of acupuncture in Africa will certainly also be a new experience.
The Mwembeladu Maternity Hospital located in the Mwembeladu area of Zanzibar Town, about 15 minutes by public transport (Daladala) from Mnazi Mmoja. The clinic specializes in maternity and childbirth.
The hospital has a prenatal (ante-natal) station and a maternity unit, including post-natal care. The prenatal unit includes pregnancy counselling, advice on family planning and HIV testing, apart from ultrasonic and preventative medical check-ups. The maternity unit consists of examination rooms, recovery rooms and a brand new surgery/operating theatre which is fully equipped with modern medical supplies, but which has not yet been officially opened. For this reason, pregnancy-related surgery is currently carried out at Zanzibar's main hospital, the "Mnazi Mmoja". The in-patient care after obstetric surgery, however, takes place at Mwembeladu.
In the quarter April - June 2010, 1390 women had been admitted to Mwembeladu hospital and 1398 deliveries have been registered, out of which 1339 took place without any complications. 704 newborns were female, 679 male. There were 23 multiple births. 102 mothers were over 35 years old, 35 under 20 years. 91 newborns weighed less than 2.5 kg. 3 of 85 tested mothers were HIV-positive; the newborns of these women were HIV-positive, too.
The minimum working hours at Mnazi Mmoja and Mwembeladu Hospital for elective students are Monday to Friday from 8.00 a.m. - 12.00 p.m., but they can also stay in the afternoons. Every Thursday at 7:30 p.m., there is a meeting between the elective student and his/her supervising physician.
Electives at Mnazi Mmoja and Mwembeladu should be fully accredited by all international medical colleges and universities. Electives can be started at any day of the week (Mon-Fri).
For students, there is an official weekly fee which has to be paid at all government hospitals. Please see details about the costs below. All government hospitals, including Mnazi Mmoja and the hospitals on the island of Pemba (Hospital of Wete, Hospital of Chake Chake and Abdallah Mzee Hospital Mkoani) have been set up by socialist countries during the time when Tanzania was still a socialist nation. Medical exchange programs between Tanzania and these countries still continue and there are regularly foreign physicians from countries such as Cuba, China, Russia and Sweden.
Professional medical volunteers
All hospitals and organisations are explicitly looking for experienced volunteer physicians such as retired specialists, or physicians who are looking for new challenges in a developing country. There is a particular need for surgeons, cardiologists, gynaecologists (only female doctors), diabetes specialists, radiologists, pediatricians, orthopaedists, general physicians, nurses and laboratory technicians.
Professionals with experience will be excluded from official fees if they commit for a minimum of 12 months. Foreign professional volunteers who want to work on their own (not under the supervision of a local physician), however, in all cases require registration from the Zanzibar Health Ministry. Registration from the Health Ministry involves high bureaucratic efforts that we will do for professionals as part of the service package before they arrive in Zanzibar. Additional costs for official certificates and accreditation may apply. For professionals who only come to visit Zanzibar for a couple of days (for instance to train medical staff in Zanzibar or to assist at medical screenings), these formalities will however not be necessary. Another possibility for professionals is to register as "elective students" which will reduce the amount of bureaucracy; but in that case the weekly fees for elective students will apply.
Rural Healthcare in Zanzibar - Makunduchi Hospital
Location: Stone Town, Zanzibar
Availability: All year, Start date flexible
Minimum Duration: 1 Week
Maximum Duration: 12 Months
Language Requirements: English
Further Languages Of Advantage: Swahili
Accommodation: House, Host Family
Supervision Possible: Yes
Qualification Of Supervisor: Specialist Doctors, General Practitioners, Nurses, Therapists
Minimum Qualification Of Intern:
Studying or working in relevant field
Further Contribution To Project: 100 USD per week contribution to hospital
Volunteering Possible: Yes
Required Qualification For Volunteer: Professional Specialist in Medicine, Nursing, Therapy
Further Contribution To Project: None
Minimum 12 months duration (with exceptions - see text); Professional Conduct, Do you have the "right" attitude?
Background Information for Medical Placements/Electives Abroad
The standard of the departments/wards within one hospital can vary very much (both at Regional and Referral Hospitals), some departments might have good equipment and might be in good condition, typically resulting from money provided by foreign development programs. For instance the HIV/AIDS and physiotherapy wards at Mnazi Mmoja Hospital Zanzibar are very modern, but the pediatric ward is very poor and needs renovation. At Mawenzi Regional Hospital they have recently renovated the main surgery theatre.
The smallest facilities that provide medical first aid (Tertiary Level) are the so-called CHPS (Community Health Compounds), health centers and small hospitals. These facilities perform only outpatient treatment and are usually run by nurses. Each facility is aimed at a population density of about 20,000 people.
Professional volunteers (nurses, therapists and physicians) can volunteer at charitable hospitals which are funded by charitable organizations, but also at medical outreach programs run by several NGOs in slum areas.
The third stage in the Mongolian reference system are specialized clinics. There are no major hospitals in Mongolia, which have many specialisations, but instead clinics that are each limited to a field of study. These include hospitalization. For an elective or a nursing internship in these clinics, you should be at least in the 3rd year of study.
Accommodation in Zanzibar Town
Most popular! - This is the preference of most of our participants. You share an apartment with other participants (where you can choose between 4-share dorm room, twin/double room, and single room) or live in a house of middle standards with a host family.
Comfort+ - For those with a need for comfort: Accommodation at a hotel or at a house of higher standards with host family.
Adventurer - For simplest and cheapest deals: Homestays of simple standards.
Hotel Accommodation and Accommodation of High Standards with Host Family:
Host Family of simple standards
I. World Unite! Service Package
|up to 31 Days||32-60 Days||61-90 Days||91-120 Days||5 Months or longer|
|450 EUR||600 EUR||700 EUR||750 EUR||850 EUR|
(Rate per Person)
|400 EUR||500 EUR||600 EUR||650 EUR||700 EUR|
The World Unite! Service Package includes:
- Individual Consultation and Preparation prior to your arrival
- Access to the World Unite! Online Resource Centre which has Preparation Materials including Intercultural Preparation, compiled particularly for your destination (PDFs, Videos)
- Preparation Session via Skype; together with further participants
- Arrangements for your Residence Permit, Work Permit or similar permit and other official permits (if required), but not the official government fees for it/them (See costs below)
- Pick-up and Transfers from/to Zanzibar International Airport (ZNZ) on arrival and departure
- Personal support staff at your location and at our international office
- Orientation and Introduction in Zanzibar
- Accompanying you to your placement on your first day
- 24 Hours emergency support by local support team
- 50 USD Contribution to your project (except for electives/internships at Mnazi Mmoja Hospital)
- Costs for 10 seedlings of indigenous trees that we plant on the slopes of Kilimanjaro
- Local SIM Card with 10.000 TSH air time
- Issuance of Confirmations/Certificates for your university, scholarship, insurance, etc. and filling out/signing Internship Contracts for your university
- 15% Discount for Safaris, Kilimanjaro Climbs, Excursions and Watersports Activities offered by "Budget Safari Tanzania"
- Our own World Unite! full-time program instructors
- In Jozani/Muungoni: Once per week half-day cultural activity in Muungoni Village
- In Jozani/Muungoni: Use of a Mountain Bike
The Rates do NOT include:
- Accommodation and Meals (see below)
- Travel to/from Zanzibar (you book it on your own; we can assist you)
- Official fees for Visa and Residence Permit (see below)
- Insurance (Travel Health Insurance, Liability Insurance, Travel Cancellation insurance; you book it on your own, we can assist you)
- Personal Expenses
- Local Transport (Estimated amounts see below)
- Please note that for supervised/mentored internships, some organizations charge further contributions. You find this information in the "Info Box" below the respective internship description.
II. Accommodation Costs
| All rates in US-Dollar. |
|All durations of stay |
|Shared House/Apartment or Hotel|
|2 Persons p.p.
|4-share dorm room p.p.||4.50 USD/Night|
Hotel Accommodation "Al Minar" incl. Breakfast
(min. 7 Nights)
(in case of 1 full month or longer*)
|2 Persons p.p.
(min. 7 Nights)
1390 USD/month(in case of 1 full month or longer*)
Host Family of middle standard on full board
|2 Persons p.p.
Host family of upper standard on full board
|2 Personen p.p.
Host family of simple standard on full board
|2 Personen p.p.
Overview of other costs:
- If meals are not included: around 130-220 USD/Month for self-catering (eating out at affordable yet good restaurants and/or cooking by yourself; you are much more flexible in this way compared to if we would serve food at your accommodation)
- Official Permits: For placement duration of up to 90 days: Visa 250 USD (for most nationals; to buy on arrival at the airport in Tanzania) + Work Permit 200 USD (we arrange through Zanzibar Labour Office); For placement of 91-180 days: twice the costs as in case of up to 90 days. Only for placements at public hospitals of up to 90 days: Visa 50 USD (for EU Citizens, Australians, New Zealand Citizens; 100 USD for US and Canadian Citizens) + Exemption Certificate 100 USD (no further permits needed)
- Small local expenses (e.g. Internet, local transport): around 30-50 USD/Month (Estimate)
- Insurances around 30-50 USD/Month
How do I pay?
Other Projects That Might Interest You:
Safaris, Kilimanjaro Climbs, Day Trips, Watersports
Learning Swahili in Sansibar!
Travel Health Insurance
Check out our video on Zanzibar Town!
Zanzibar - Spice Island in the Indian Ocean
Our coordinators in Zanzibar
Things to do in Zanzibar
Getting To Zanzibar
Several airlines fly directly or with an intermediate stop at Zanzibar (ZNZ). Remember to book your flight and share with us your flight details. From Zanzibar airport, we will pick you up and bring you to your accommodation in Zanzibar.