Universal health care is guaranteed by the Nicaraguan Constitution and despite the huge national debt and the extensive poverty, the government has done a better job of offering health care to its citizens than in previous decades,
but since the government lacks funds, health care is still the biggest burden for poor families to have to bear.
We try to help alleviate that burden a bit and try to address issues that are not being addressed. Three examples out of many are:
(1) We have a part-time pediatrician who sees many asthma cases… due in part to poorly ventilated wood cook stoves and dirty air from burning trash (Nueva Vida barrio borders the Ciudad Sandino dump which is constantly on fire). We give out rescue inhalers AND maintenance inhalers to keep children from having so many asthmatic crises. As a result we are slowly becoming the asthma center for the city.
(2) Many clinics will only treat acute illnesses and not chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, thyroid problems, epilepsy, etc., but these people need continuing care in order to have quality of life. We have a program to treat such patients and we do our very best to keep the medicines stocked in our pharmacy so that they do not have to go one day without them.
(3) Patients in Ciudad Sandino who need ultrasounds, x-rays, and mammograms have to go to a public hospital in Managua to get on a waiting list. We now have a radiologist working with us, with the only ultrasound in an area of over 100,000 people. If you can help, please contact us.
These are just three examples. We try to fill gaps left by the government due to its lack of funds, to provide a family clinic atmosphere instead of a walk-in clinic atmosphere, and to be more holistic in our approach.