Peace Corps medical programs emphasize the preventive approach to disease. The Peace Corps will provide you with the necessary vaccinations, medications, and information to stay healthy. Each post maintains a health unit with a full-time medical officer who handles Volunteers’ primary health-care needs, including evaluation and treatment of most medical conditions. Upon your arrival in-country, you will receive a country-specific health handbook. During pre-service training, the health unit will provide you with basic medical supplies and a medical kit to treat mild illnesses and first aid needs, which can be restocked during service. During this time, you must provide your own prescription medications and any other specific medical supplies you need. (Bring a three-month supply of your prescriptions!) The medical officer will order medications for you, and it may take several months for shipments to arrive.
During service, the medical officers are available to answer your questions, and you may always feel free to contact them by phone, text message, email, or in person if you feel you have a physical, emotional, or other problem that relates to your health or well-being. You will have physicals at mid-service and at the end of your service, and can be seen by your medical officer on an as-needed basis. Additional medical care is available at local hospitals. If you develop a serious medical problem during your service, the medical officer will consult with the Office of Health Services in Washington, D.C., or a regional medical officer. If you cannot receive the care you need in-country, you will be transported to a Peace Corps-approved regional medical facility or the U.S. Read more about the Peace Corps’ approach to health.
Health Issues In-CountryMajor health problems among Peace Corps Volunteers in Jordan are rare and are often the result of a Volunteer’s failure to take preventive measures to stay healthy. The most common health problems here are the same ones found in the U.S., such as colds, diarrhea, hemorrhoids, constipation, sinus infection, skin infections, headaches, dental problems, minor injuries, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), adjustment disorders, and emotional problems. These may be more frequent or compounded by life in Jordan because certain environmental factors here raise the risk or exacerbate the severity of the symptoms or illness.
Smoking, for example, is not restricted at work or in public buildings. Volunteers are usually unprepared for the amount of cigarette smoke to which they are exposed. Summers are hot and dry. Dust and wind in parts of the country may cause your throat, nose, and eyes to sting and create cold-like symptoms. Winters, on the other hand, are much colder and damper than you might expect and may lead to sinusitis and upper-respiratory infections. One of the most common health concerns in Jordan is diarrhea, which can be avoided for the most part by thoroughly washing fruits and vegetables, boiling your drinking water, and avoiding street food and food that has been cooked and maintained at room temperature for an extended period of time (chicken roasted on skewers in the market). Hepatitis is always present in the population. You will be vaccinated against hepatitis A and B, meningitis, tetanus, diphtheria, typhoid, MMR (measles, mumps, rubella), and polio if you have no documentation of previous immunization.