Sunday, May 1, 2011

Health Care Issues Critical for many patients!

Friends and Family,
This past week the National Commission of Health Care, for the Bishop's Conference of Guatemala, issued an urgent message to the public, following approval of an health initiative that fails to meet or guarantee basic health needs of the population. This Commission requests an immediate meeting of all sectors involved in health care to a dialogue, so that this very necessary Law for health care, include universal and financial coverage for all guatemalans, and that it be a real and part of the political agenda for years to come. Privatization of care is not a solution in this poor country, nor can the Church and other charitable institutions carry this burden; it is the responsibility of the government.

An elderly man, with no immediate family, has been an in patient the last ten days in the clinic. He has a cardiac condition with hypertension and suffering a serious hernia that requires surgery. Our doctor has referred him to the national hospital and they have refused to perform surgery because of his cardiac complication; we have taken him to an internist for evaluation and have approval for surgery. We are hopeful he will have his surgery in fifteen days when volunteer surgeons come to a catholic hospital, located three hours from our clinic. Meanwhile he is fearful to stay home alone because of episodes of acute pain, so we continue to monitor him in the clinic. Our own doctor is anticipating to accompany the patient and possibly participate in the surgery. These surgeries cost the clinic one hundred dollars plus cost of transportation, medications and laboratory tests. He will return to the clinic for recuperation. This is one of many, many patients that depend on care from private, charitable institutions; these patients should receive immediate and complete care in national hospitals. Please pray for Francisco that these fifteen days will pass quickly and he can return home in better health. Please also pray that the right to health care in Guatemala be universal and just and accept the cultural diversity of the Mayan population, be integral and equal for all and that it be the LAW passed by the GUATEMALA CONGRESS! This law must and should then continue regardless which party wins or governs this country, for years to come!

Photo of Francisco, sitting outside the clinic this morning, in prayer!

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