Volunteer - ServePakistan
IMR has been engaged in medical relief activities in Pakistan since the devastating earthquake in 2005 when our teams treated thousands of injured patients. Subsequently, IMR has conducted free medical, eye, and dental camps, opened and equipped basic health care units, built a maternity hospital, and sent relief supplies. Among our ongoing projects are a free cataract surgery and a hearing aids programs, support for a rural medical center, and setting up a specialized dental center for thalassemia patients.
In 2019, IMR entered into a collaboration with CDRS (Comprehensive Disaster Relief Services) to send medical missions to their Mother & Child Health Center in Rahat Kot in northern Swat which provides primary care to the neighboring rural population and is equipped with basic diagnostic facilities. The first mission took place in November 2019 when our pioneer team of 4 dedicated volunteers traveled on a week long mission. The Covid pandemic in 2020 hampered our plans when many of our international missions had to be canceled. However, we have been able to restart the medical mission to Pakistan in November 2020. Our 5 missions so far have provided free primary care to 10,550 patients.
Volunteer OpportunitiesServePakistan Medical Missions
ServePakistan Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any pandemic related restrictions or quarantine requirements for travel to Pakistan?
No, there are currently no restrictions on travelers from USA flying to Pakistan. There are no quarantine requirements either. You can move around freely once you arrive. However, airlines have their own protocols and passengers are required to follow those as the case may be.
Passengers returning to USA from Pakistan are required to undergo a self quarantine of 14 days, unless they possess a covid negative test certificate obtained within the previous 72 hours. Covid tests are adequately available in Pakistan.
What are the arrangements for accommodation, food, and local transportation?
Team members are received and dropped at Islamabad airport by a representative of CDRS. After an overnight stay at a decent hotel in the city, they are driven to Rahat Kot in an air conditioned coaster/van. Return journey to Islamabad will be likewise, with hotel arrangements for those taking flights the next day. The same van will transport the team to & from the clinic daily from the hotel in Rahat Kot.
CDRS will arrange all meals during the team’s stay in Swat – breakfast & dinner at the hotel and a working lunch on-site.
What is the clinic schedule?
Team members are required to arrive in Islamabad, Pakistan latest by Saturday, stay there overnight and drive to Swat on Sunday morning. Clinic is from Monday to Friday, drive back to Islamabad on Saturday with return flights Sunday onwards as convenient.
Where is the clinic located?
IMR has collaborated with CDRS (Comprehensive Disaster Response Services), a US-based NGO with a vast footprint in Pakistan, which has a clinic in Rahat Kot, northern Swat. This small town is about 175 miles/4 hour drive from the capital Islamabad.
How are medications dispensed? Is there a pharmacy on-site or do we only write prescriptions?
Based on their experience from operating this clinic and from our inputs, CDRS maintains a well-stocked pharmacy. Physicians will write prescriptions that will be dispensed by the pharmacist there.
What type of facilities are available? Is laboratory testing available?
The clinic has a small OT, an X-ray machine, ultrasound, a laboratory, and a pharmacy.
How are language barriers addressed? Will there be translators?
Most of the local physicians and staff are well versed in the English language. However, translators are available too.
What are the types of expenses involved for this mission?
Volunteers only pay for their air tickets to and from Pakistan. IMR arranges everything else – food, transportation, and accommodation.
Do I need a visa to travel to Pakistan?
Yes, it is needed for US & Canadian nationals and can be obtained by applying online. However, any team members possessing NICOP can enter without a visa.