China California Heart Watch Winter Break Externship

Thursday, Oct 6, 2016

“China California Heart Watch” is a U.S. nonprofit organization whose mission is to serve the rural poor through teaching, research, and clinical care in rural Yunnan Province, China. This winter, China Cal is inviting students and others with an interest in health professions to come and learn with us about health care and pediatric cardiovascular disease in Yunnan Province, China.

Objective: An important objective of our externship program is to create awareness of the problems of healthcare in rural China, and to encourage students toward a career in public health, nursing, or medicine focused on underserved populations.

Location and Program: All extern activities will run from December 9-27th 2016 in rural areas of Yunnan Province, China. Yunnan has a population of about 44 million people and is one of the poorest and most medically underserved regions of China. There are 15 externship spots available in December 2016. Externs will be working in rural areas of Pu’er prefecture of Yunnan province.

Overall Externship Activity: December 9-27
Orientation: December 9-15
Work program: December 15-27

Externship Description: Upon arrival in Dali, China, externs will undergo training under the direction of Professor Robert C. Detrano (MD, PhD) from UC Irvine School of Medicine. The goal is to understand the basics of congenital heart disease in China, the purpose and practice of the newborn training program, how to use a stethoscope to distinguish normal from abnormal heart sounds in children, to assist in the physical and ultrasound heart examination of children, and to become well acquainted with rural life in Yunnan Province. At the completion of the training, externs will then travel to rural county centers where they will participate in our supervised travelling clinic to examine, diagnose and refer children with congenital heart disease. Externs will also assist in the training of rural obstetric doctors and nurses in how to examine newborns for heart disease. Field teams will be led by Dr. Detrano and Dr. Feng Long He (Kunming Children’s Hospital, Department of Thoracic Surgery). Externs will be taught by additional faculty members and staff from UCI and Kunming Medical University with extensive experience in research and clinical practice in rural Yunnan.

Externship Costs: We request that summer externs make a donation of $3,000 USD. This donation helps to fund China Cal’s charitable activities, including training rural doctors and supporting surgeries for children with congenital heart disease. The donation also includes all hotel accommodations, meals, and local travel during the externship. The donation is tax deductible in the United States. Students are required to cover the cost of their round--‐trip air ticket and visa. All non Chinese citizens will be required to obtain a valid Chinese visa. This must be organized and paid though local agencies or the Chinese consulate/embassy in your home country. Visa costs vary from year to year between $50 and $150 USD.

Health and Safety: Yunnan Province, China is safe for foreign visitors. Students will be advised regarding caution and care for their belongings and documents. Health risks are relatively few. However, as visitors sometimes suffer from gastro-enteritis, China Cal doctors will provide prophylactic education, and medications will be on-hand if needed.

*Questions? For more information about our externship programs, please visit our official website at, visit our Facebook at or contact Meredith Yang at

Application deadline: November 15