El Salvador Pediatric Ophthalmology Team (141011ELOP)
In El Salvador, children under the age of 5 suffer from a high incidence of infectious diseases and malnutrition (28% in rural areas). Despite advances in medical technology, these statistics have remained high for more than 50 years. Additionally, increased life expectancy has led to a rise in chronically degenerative diseases in old age. Even though people are living longer, their quality of life is declining because they do not have access to proper health care.
El Salvador’s National Commission of Health reports that the most marginalized sections of the population have difficulty accessing primary and specialty health care services. Poverty coupled with the high cost of services and a lack of health care providers has made access difficult for many. Specialty services including dermatology, dental hygiene, ophthalmology and cardiology are some areas that often remain untreated.
- Learn about the culture of the people in El Salvador.
- Learn from MTI partner ASAPROSAR staff and community members, ways in which ophthalmology services are different in El Salvador than the United States.
- Provide eye consultations for approximately 80 children and perform surgeries on 60 individuals who suffer from strabismus, nystagmus and ptosis.
- Learn from ASAPROSAR staff about the impact it has had over 30 years of project implementation in El Salvador.
Greatest benefit this specific team will bring:
The team will perform corrective eye surgery for approximately 60 children who would not otherwise have access to surgery.
Challenges you expect they may encounter:
There will be all kinds of challenges, mental, physical and spiritual. The team, with the help of each member and the ASAPROSAR staff in El Salvador, will help each other overcome any obstacles they may encounter.
ASAPROSAR – Salvadoran Association for Rural Health
Dr. Michael Struck, Wilma Gillis, Nicole Gadberry, Judy Schmidt and Melanie Schmitt