Minimally Invasive Surgery and Interventional Techniques
Department of Biomechanical Engineering - Delft University of Technology
Prof.dr. Jenny Dankelman
Ir. Roos Oosting
Internship in Suriname: Improve the current sterilization process in the Academic Hospital Paramaribo
16 November 2017

Internship in Suriname: Improve the current sterilization process in the Academic Hospital Paramaribo by analysing the current situation, identify the weaknesses and implementing pragmatic solutions.

About the project


Sterilizing medical instruments is of the utmost importance in healthcare. Every hospital in the Netherlands has a ‘Centrale Sterilisatie Afdeling/Dienst’ which is responsible for the decontamination of the instruments, including cleaning, disinfection and sterilization. Without a proper decontamination procedure patients die or get infected with diseases.


In comparison, hospitals in Suriname lag in the development of such procedures. The Academic Hospital Paramaribo (AZP), which is the largest in Suriname, is currently updating its procedure of decontamination. During your project you will encounter many challenges and it is up to you to prioritize and choose your challenge to address. This makes the project genuinely dynamic.



Your responsibilities

Your challenge is to analyse the current situation of the sterilization process, identify the weaknesses and improve the current situation by implementing pragmatic solutions to improve the process. Your analysis will go beyond the central sterilization department. Some departments have their own autoclave and almost every department cleans the instruments by themselves. In addition, other departments like logistics, repository and technical service play an integral part in the decontamination process. A thorough analysis is necessary.


During your stay you will gain technical and practical knowledge about the decontamination process and get loads of knowledge about the daily processes in a hospital. You will have to deal with many people of different level of knowledge, age and culture. You will be situated mainly at the healthcare technology department and around the OK, which you can visit plenteous.


Your profile

-        Interested in research in developing countries

-        Pragmatic thinking

-        Empathic ability

-        Able to work under changing circumstances

-        Take responsibilities and act on these

-        Be enthusiastic, focused and have a result-driven mind-set

-        Preferably Dutch due to the native language in Suriname



Facts about Suriname and ‘Academisch Ziekenhuis Paramaribo’

Suriname has a population of around 542.000 inhabitants. AZP, with a bed capacity of ± 590, 31 medical departments and 2 laboratories, is the largest and only academic hospital in Suriname. According to the “golden hour principle”, AZP can serve 66% of the population. Beside the government, AZP with its 2100 employees is the largest employer in the country.

AZP has an annual admission of ±23.000 patients and counts over 300.000 treatments a year, of which 50.000 are performed at the Emergency Room. The AZP is obliged by law to treat every incoming patient, whether they are insured or not. A majority of the patients (±70%) is categorized under social welfare and is not able to pay for the provided care.




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