Hermilio Valdizan Hospital, Lima, Peru
Ayacucho, Peru, was the birthplace of the Shining Path terrorist group, and nearly 70,000 people were killed by the Shining Path and the Peruvian military during the 1980’s and 1990’s. The Mental Health Commission of Ayacucho (COSMA) (www.ayacuchomentalhealth.org) was founded in 2003 to serve the survivors, and it remains the only mental health clinic in the Peruvian Andes. Yale psychiatrists James Phillips and Mark Rego established a collaboration with COSMA shortly after its creation, which includes traveling to Ayacucho twice yearly to provide direct patient care, as well as classes and supervision for the clinic’s psychology interns. The most common diagnoses include depression and schizophrenia.
Hermilio Valdizan Hospital (www.minsa.gob.pe/hhv/), located in Lima, is one of three public psychiatric hospitals in Peru. The hospital provides both inpatient and outpatient treatment, including long-term drug addiction treatment at the Ñaña Rehabilitation Center (www.minsa.gob.pe/hhv/crñ.htm).
At Hermilio Valdizan, students have the option to rotate through various services, including the emergency room, inpatient wards, and outpatient consultations. Activities will include participating in team rounds and interviewing patients.