Visitors from most countries need a visa to enter Zambia.
The visa situation is a little complicated, and due to the long visa processing times, you may struggle to get an appropriate visa in time. If you application to work or study at SFH is approved by the hospital, start trying to arrange your visa as soon as you can.
If you are staying in Zambia for less than 90 days and will not be employed by the hospital, you can purchase a “tourist” visa at the airport or border crossing. Medical student “electives” are something of a grey area: to study in Zambia requires a pre-arranged visa, but visiting the hospital for a period of informal study (as is the case for most “electives” a tourist visa will suffice. However, to avoid confusion at the airport or border, it is best to state that you are “visiting” Katete.
The cost of a 90 day tourist visa is around US$ 50 for a single entry (if you plan to travel to Malawi, buy a “multiple entry” visa for around US$ 80).
For longer periods and/or for anybody planning to work at the hospital (including any qualified volunteers) you will need to obtain “work” or “volunteer” visa from the Zambian High Commission or Embassy in your own country. At present you will find that you only get 30 days (even if you are issued for a visa for longer by a High Commission or Embassy your passport will be stamped for 30 days on entry) but this can be renewed at the local immigration office in Katete, at no extra cost, for up to 3 months total stay.