FAQ

How do I become a member of flying sams?

See Membership.

Many documents and fees will be turned in via online except for the Clinic fee which will be paid at pre-clinic.

How do I sign up/get into a clinic?

If you are on the email list, then a clinic coordinator will send out a notification for sign-ups for the next clinic date 1-2 weeks in advance of the clinic date. A link to the signup form will also be posted on this email. Keep in mind, drivers/translators receive priority, and you must participate in a certain number of events north of the border in order to be eligible to attend. We measure this participation through clinic points.

What are Clinic Points?

Clinic Points are a system that Flying Samaritans uses to choose which of our volunteers go on a clinic as compared to other students who sign up. Priority is typically given to members that attain the most clinic points. We utilize this method to assure that the volunteers chosen to attend clinic have earned it.

Volunteers who attend events (i.e. fundraisers, flyering, socials, gbms, clinic clean up trips etc), or volunteer any of their time with us in any way north of the border, can attain at least 1 clinic point per event. There is opportunity to earn 1 point more per event if you show dedication, participation, and zeal in your efforts to volunteer with us. Even if you have 2 or less points, sign up to the clinic because you can be waitlisted and then chosen. Every clinic trip you attend, we will be subtracting 3 points.

What should I bring to a clinic day?

Please see Clinic Supplies

What is a clinic day like?

Download a Typical Clinic Day.pdf

When is the next clinic trip?

See our clinic schedule here. We hold clinics at least once a month on the 4th Saturday, but the clinic dates vary every quarter due to doctor availability and numerous other factors. We have 4 sites: Chapultepec clinic trips are once a month on the 4th Saturday (year-round), Mujeres Con Mayuscula trips are once a quarter, Orphanage Day trips are once a quarter, and Rosarito trips are over the summer. We also collaborate with SDSU and sometimes we’ll send a car of volunteers to their trip.

How much is membership?

Membership fee is $25 with t shirt, OR 35$ for fee and scrubs, OR 40$ for fee, t shirt, and scrubs. Clinic fee is $30.
A good chunk of that membership fee is the t shirt. Some goes towards medicines and supplies, and the rest goes towards the Palomar Chapter of the Flying Samaritans, which includes all the branches of the Flying Sams in SoCal. The clinic fee is a transportation fee: to pay for gas, toll roads, insurance, and supplies. If you want to attend a clinic but are not already a paid member, then you must pay both at the pre clinic meeting or on the actual clinic date. So, if you have never paid us any money and you are selected to go on a clinic trip, then you must bring $55 to go on the clinic trip (except drivers, who don’t pay a clinic fee).

Can I write you a check?

No. Membership Fee payments must be done online ONLY. See our shop page. Clinic Fees must be paid in cash at pre-clinic.

I am not a paid member (yet), can I go on a trip?

If you are not a paid member, you will not receive priority to go on clinic trips. Paid members who have high rates of participation in events north of the border will receive priority when clinic coordinators are selecting volunteers. And drivers and translators are will always be necessary for the clinic to happen. That being said, you can still get selected to go on a trip if there is room and many people join us as paid members for the first time when they attend a clinic.

I don’t go to UCSD. Can I still go on a trip?

Sure. Fill out the membership materials as normal, and email us with the contact tab above.

How can I get more involved in Flying Sams?

Subscribe to our newsletter on the left navigation bar. Come to our meetings, socials, recruiting, fundraising, and donation gathering events. Join our facebook. In order to make the clinic trip selection process fair, you must attend some proportion of our events in order to be eligible for a clinic trip. Be proactive. Learning Spanish is always helpful for Mexico-based organizations. We are always looking for physicians, drivers, sources for medications, translators, fundraising ideas, just about anything that would benefit our cause and otherwise improve our ability to provide care for the patients that we see in Mexico. If you come to a clinic day, coming on time, taking initiative and otherwise demonstrating a positive, constructive and resourceful attitude are highly valuable to our goals.

It’s already mid-quarter, can I still join?

Of course. We are always looking for more avid members, we are even active during school vacations.

I’m not pre-health, can I still join?

Of course. We can use the help and skills of students from all sorts of fields. it’s a medical and dental clinic but if you are a self-starter, like working with people and helping others, your contributions are welcome.

I missed the meeting, where can I get information?

The GBM slides will be available on the Home page. Most information should be available on this website in the form of updates and on our calendar. If you have any questions, fill out the contact form on this website and an officer can answer your questions. Note that if something is already answered on the FAQ, then your question will likely not elicit a response.

I can no longer make it to clinic, what should I do?

If accepted, notify your clinic coordinator at least 72 hours prior to the morning of clinic. If it’s less than 72 hours from the morning of clinic AND it is an emergency, please call or email your clinic coordinator as soon as possible. If it is less than 72 hours from morning of clinic and there is no emergency, or you wake up late, please call your coordinator as soon as possible.

Please see our Missed Clinic Policy for additional regulations and consequences for missing clinic (in non-Emergency cases).

Isn’t Mexico dangerous?

We won’t deny that Mexico has earned its reputation, and we cannot be careless in our activities. However, we have never been in danger during any of our activities and we take many precautions. First of all, the Flying Samaritans operate in Mexico at the invitation of the Autonomous University of Baja California and in collaboration with the local Mexican government – DIF specifically. We never stay past dark, we take the toll roads, we purchase Mexican insurance for our cars before crossing, and if we are stopped with medicines then we have a letter from DIF explaining who we are and giving us permission to continue our activities. Ensenada is a popular tourist area, quite removed from the epicenter of border violence. Many cruises stop there and our clinic is located in a community center near a park and a school.

Additionally, we caravan to and from Mexico, we utilize walkie talkies, and we provide UCOP insurance to UCSD students. We advise that you have or purchase one-day health insurance, up-to-date immunizations, and register yourself through the U.S. Embassy in Mexico in case of emergencies. Should you have any other suggestions on ways to be safe in Mexico, due to your experience or knoweldge, please contact us at fs.ucsd@gmail.com.

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