By: Beatrix Yuan, Bachelor of Science in Health promotion
It is hard to believe that my time in Tanzania is coming to an end soon. During my stay, I learned Swahili, explored nearby sceneries, and made some great friends. I really appreciate the opportunity to come to Tanzania and to spend time with all the amazing people that I met here.
During my internship at TTCIH (Tanzania Training Centre for International Health, Ifakara) my overarching goal is to learn about qualitative data analysis through working on the ASDIT (Accessing Safe Deliveries in Tanzania) Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) transcripts. The FGDs were conducted in the five catchment areas served by five different health facilities in Morogoro region, Tanzania. In each catchment area, three groups of participants were interviewed: pregnant women and their husbands, post-partum women and their husbands, as well as community leaders and health facility staff members. The FGDs were recorded, transcribed and translated into English. During the FGDs, the following topics were discussed: the social context for women to access obstetric care, quality of care, family norms and support related to childbirth, eighteen-and-under pregnancy, and recommendations for the public health services. Through analysing the transcripts, I was able to identify several key factors that affect women who live in rural Tanzania and their access to quality obstetric care.
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to shadow at the One-Stop Clinic at St. Francis Hospital. The Clinic offers comprehensive services for HIV/AIDS testing, counselling services, informational sessions on HIV/AIDS, and community outreach services. I observed the testing service and follow-up counselling services. Through this shadowing experience, I learned about facilitators and barriers of people infected by HIV/AIDS accessing health services.
(HIV/AIDS testing kit)
I also went on my first Safari trip at the Ruaha National Park, which was very exciting. We were greeted by many lovely animals, such as elephants, giraffes, monkeys, lions, and a leopard (which is very rare to see).
I really appreciate the opportunity QES and the Global Health Office gave me to conduct research and experience cultures in Tanzania. I would really love to come back sometime in the future. It is not easy to fit in to a new environment, especially in another country; but as long as you go in with patience, respect, an open heart, and a respectful and understanding attitude, you will be able to find your way in and make some true friends for life.