Volunteer Information Packet

Peruvian American Medical Society (P.A.M.S.)



Thank you for your interest in the P.A.M.S. medical mission to Ayacucho, Peru.

Please note the following information:

  • Your application must be completed and submitted by March 31, 2019.

  • Application fees should be submitted with your application. Please make checks out to PAMS MISSION AYACUCHO and mail them to 5457 S. Palm Avenue, Whittier, CA 90601.

  • You may also use PayPal


  • All physicians and nursing staff must provide your current license.

  • You will be notified how to submit your travel plans.

  • Every volunteer must have an application on file, this includes spouses, etc.

  • Children under 16 must be cared for by an adult. No one under 18 may travel alone. The mission cannot be responsible for unattended minors.

  • All volunteers MUST have travel insurance. The mission cannot be responsible for expenses in case of emergencies.

You must sign up with our e-mail group at missionayacucho@yahoogroups.com. This is our primary means of communication. If you have any problems, please contact jbillimek@gmail.com

Our website is ayacuchomission.org. Please check it regularly for updates and mission information.

Mission Dates:

Outreach Team:

  • Arrive into Lima on Tuesday 6-4-2019.

  • Depart for Ayacucho on 6-5-2019.

  • Work begins on Thursday 6-6-2019 with the outreach team. 

The surgical/nursing team:

  • Arrive into Lima Friday 6-7-2019

  • Depart for Ayacucho Saturday 6-8-2019.  

  • Surgical work begins on Monday 6-10-2019

  • Mission Ends on Friday 6-14-2019.

All volunteers are expected to work the entire mission and to travel on the dates given.  If you need special arrangements, please submit them to Loretta Rihbany for consideration.   

Transportation to Ayacucho from Lima and back is by airline.  LATAM and LC Peru are the airlines that fly to Ayacucho.  Please note there are luggage limits and the planes are smaller.  If you do not want to fly, there are public buses. The bus ride is approximately 9 hours, but less expensive. 


Many people like to also make vacation plans around your trip to Ayacucho.  The time around June 20-22 in Cuzco will be during festival time.  Plan your trip with this in mind if you are planning to visit Machu Pichu.  If you need additional assistance in planning your trip you may use your own travel agent or

Travel Agent: Festival Travel and Tours

Janet White of Festival Travel and Tours      420 South Euclid Street Suite 101

Anaheim, California 92802     (714) 520-5551     www.toursfestival.com


This is the hotel we stay at in Ayacucho.  If you need any additional information please contact Loretta Rihbany.

Hotel in Ayacucho:  Santa Rosa Hotel

Hotel Santa Rosa, Ayacucho, 01151 681-2083.  Cost is approximately $25.00 per day including breakfast.


Welcome to Ayacucho

Code of Conduct 

We are very happy to have you join us in our PAMS medical mission to Ayacucho. We hope the time you spend here will enhance your life knowing you will be helping others.

 While in Peru we represent our country and healthcare. It is important that we portray ourselves in the most positive light.  Although it is fun to be here in Peru, we are here for a reason. We are here to work and assist those in need. We would encourage you to enjoy your time here, but to remember it is the work that takes priority.

Therefore we must all follow guidelines to make our time in Peru productive and meaningful.

  • Be on time to work and all meetings. For those working in Surgery, please be ready to start at 7:30 am. For those going out on outreach, the departure time will be determined, but it will be earlier.

  • No late night parties. No excessive drinking or staying out late. Unacceptable behavior may lead to your dismissal from the mission. Curfew must be adhered to.

  • All volunteers will be assigned a duty. Do not change your assignment without consulting the Volunteer Coordinator.

  • If you are assigned to a physician, do not leave him/her.

  • Only those volunteers required to be in the Surgery area are allowed. Due to short supplies and infection control, we cannot have additional staff in surgery.

  • Any changes to the assignments must go through the Volunteer Coordinator or designee.

  • We will have daily meetings to review our activities and make any necessary changes. Please review the white board at the hotel outside registration to see the day’s activities.

  • NEVER eat or use electronic devices in front of our patients.


Commonly Asked Questions:



The Peruvian currency is called soles. Do not bring travelers checks - they are not accepted.  Credit cards are generally not accepted, either and CANNOT be used to pay the hotel bill. Cash or your ATM card is preferred. You will be able to exchange your cash in the plaza area with local vendors. Do not carry large amounts of cash with you on a daily basis. When bringing cash, do not bring any bills that are torn, written on or worn. They will not be accepted. Bring the newest, cleanest bills you can find. You may want to start saving up as soon as possible.


The weather is very mild in Ayacucho. It is similar to the weather in southern California. You should bring a jacket for evening or if you plan to walk in the morning. 


While in Ayacucho there are taxis and motor taxis to get around. Most volunteers walk to the hospital and the Plaza area.

Volunteer assignments:

Assignments are made on a daily basis based on the needs of the mission and the expertise of the volunteers. If you are fluent in Spanish, you will be used as a translator for the medical staff. Clinical staff will be assigned accordingly. Non-clinical volunteers will be used in the hospital pharmacy/central supply, as runners to assist our patients and our clinical staff. Assignments will be changed as often as possible to allow a variety of experiences.


Ayacucho offers many public telephone services. You can purchase a telephone card or just use one of their public phones in the Plaza. The Santa Rosa Hotel offers internet access along with many public internet cafes.


The attire in Ayacucho is casual.  Scrubs are used primarily in the hospital. All clinical staff is responsible for bringing their own scrubs. Volunteers can also wear scrubs, but this is not required. Avoid wearing shorts, short skirts or any revealing clothing. No open-toed shoes.  Costco is a good place to get basic scrubs and they are inexpensive.


Bring sunscreen. We are at a high altitude and you should apply it daily. We are at about 8,000 feet. Your first day in Ayacucho should not be active so you can adjust to the altitude.


The food in Ayacucho is very good and you can eat at any restaurant. We will direct you to the most common ones. Do not eat from vendors cooking on the street. Avoid eating fresh vegetables (salads) and fruit you cannot peel. Bottled water is available at many stores. Avoid drinking non-bottled water.  You may want to bring your own energy bars and such, especially if you are on outreach

Your budget:


Hotel        $25.00 per night (breakfast is included)

Tips          Optional to hotel staff

Food        Meals in Ayacucho are inexpensive depending on how much you like to eat and drink.                  You can estimate around $5.00

Dinners     We usually have a welcome dinner or a farewell dinner. The cost is approximately                         $20.00 per person/per event.

Airfare      Individual cost per person.

Souvenirs Ayacucho offers beautiful tapestries and ceramics.

Suggestion: set aside money planned for a specific reason in a marked envelope. This way it won't be spent for other reasons.


We will be staying at the Santa Rosa Hotel. Hotel Santa Rosa, Ayacucho, 01151 681-2083.  Cost is approximately $25.00 per day including breakfast. If you need additional arrangements you should contact Loretta Rihbany.



If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any of the following Mission Leaders:

Director                          Cesar Aranguri MD      caranguri@doctor.com        714-222-4870

Director                          Cindy Beisser MD      pupmom@yahoo.com          419-290-3005

Nursing Director             Loretta Rihbany RN     lrihbany@gmail.com            562-695-0083

Coordinator                    John Billimek                jbillimek@gmail.com            949-295-7126