Clinical Internships for Nursing Students

April 04, 2023

In a post-pandemic world, it has become all the more necessary for the next generation of healthcare professionals to be well-versed in global health.  Columbia Global Centers | Mumbai supported the Global Student Clinical Experiences program of the Columbia University School of Nursing (CUSON) which provides global opportunities for nursing students to experience diverse health systems and gain a broader understanding of innovative patient care models for treatment of infectious diseases.  This year, of the 52 participating students across 12 countries, five were placed in India’s St. Philomena's College of Nursing at Bengaluru.  

The Mumbai Center organized a virtual orientation session for the nursing students in India on April 4, 2023, to acquaint them with India’s healthcare and nursing system before they embarked on their internship journey to seek practical knowledge.  The two lectures delivered by experts during the session focused on India’s public health challenges and provided an overview of nursing in India, detailing the challenges and practices of dealing with infectious diseases. 

Dr. Jaya Kuruvilla, Principal of P.D. Hinduja National Hospital, College of Nursing, elaborated on India’s nursing framework by highlighting innovative solutions that India has adopted to combat the spread of infectious diseases, including regular screening for diseases, robust immunization programs, community health workers’ programs, specialized healthcare schemes, and public-private partnership models.  She also discussed India’s successful Covid-19 vaccination drive through which a total of 184 crore doses were delivered during the pandemic.  

The second expert, Dr. Nerges Mistry, Director of The Foundation for Medical Research, presented the various challenges that India’s public health system faces such as inadequate access to advanced technology, a lack of focus on contemporary education, the paucity of resources, and shortage of medical professionals.  She emphasized the need for increased investment in India’s public health cadre. 

The nursing students successfully completed the six-week practicum and graduated on May 16, 2023.  They were grateful for the opportunity to learn more about issues of global health practice and equity through this internship.