Answers to our Questionnaire for Visitors of Solomon Islands

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Visitor
Sex? male
Profession/occupation? MD, registar internal medicine
Home country? Switzerland
What made you want to go to Solomon Islands? talking to a previous visitor
Did you go alone or in company? in company
Arriving in Solomon Islands
When did you arrive in Solomon Islands? November 2006
Did you encounter any bureaucratic difficulties? no
What was your first impression after arrival? To be picked up by the Medical Superintendent was a nice surprise.
Living in Solomon Islands
What did positively surprise you? friendliness of the locals
What did negatively surprise you? littering everywhere
What took longest to get used to? to speak pidgin
What did you miss most in Solomon Islands? real bread and spices
What should you have brought along? spices
What did you do to prevent malaria? Lariam
Place and province where you spent most of your time? Honiara, Honiara-City
Other places/provinces where you stayed? Buala, Isabel
Where did you stay? Hotel, Kiwi-House, home sitting, guesthouse
How long did you stay at each location? 1 week, 2 months, 1 month, 1 month
How much did you pay for each? accomodation was paid for by the Ministry of Health
Where did you usually eat? home/downtown, also in the cafeteria
What did you typically pay for a normal meal? SBD 16 to 30
What local food/beverage did you like most? green coconut, roti
What local food/beverage did you like least? taro
Mobile phone services
If you brought along a mobile phone, which services did you successfully use? none
Comments? did not work
Money matters
Used Travellers Cheques in US$ to get cash
Used debit card to get cash
Used credit card to pay for goods/services
Comments? There was no ATM in Isabel Province
Working in Solomon Islands
How did you usually go to work? walk or by bus
Where did you work? NRH, medical department; Buala Hospital, Isabel Province
What was your occupation? physician (registrar)
What were your working days and hours? 8am to 5pm (excl. lunchtime)
What was particularly difficult in regard to your work? getting used to local diagnostic procedures, accepting lax work habits
Did you feel accepted by the locals? yes
What did you usually do in your spare time after work? barbecue, cooking, playing soccer
Questions for medical trainees of all levels (students to registrars)
How was the supervision? loose
Comments Whenever I asked I was usually helped by my consultant
How was the teaching? poor
Comments consultant held a double position and had not enough time
Leaving Solomon Islands and looking back
When did you leave Solomon Islands? March 2007
How long was your stay? 4 months
How do you judge the length of your stay? just about right
What did you learn from the locals? to take things a bit easier
Your advice to prospective visitors? learn pidgin in advance
What did you miss most when back at home again? the friendliness of the locals
What did you enjoy most when back at home again? eating bread, shopping in well stocked stores
Would you go back for another stay? maybe
Estimated total cost of your stay (including travel costs)? CHF 10,000
Additional comments? -

Possibly unfamiliar terms:
roti: unleavened thin bread wrapped around an Indian meat/vegetables filling

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