Peru: School Health Outreach and the Chocolatada Christmas Party
April 5, 2013
Magali M. de Pujalt
On August 15, 2007, Pisco, Peru experienced a deadly earthquake…7.9 on the Richter scale. Over 1,000 people died, 40,000 families were left without homes, and 150,000 people were left without water. The majority of the health infrastructure was damaged or destroyed in the earthquake and the people were in need of medical attention. The Real Medicine Foundation team was deployed to Peru on October 12 in an effort to assist those in need.
The primary objective of our project was to bring long-term free healthcare to the victims of the earthquake who had lost their homes, possessions, and in many cases, loved ones. The areas most affected were Pisco, Ica, Chincha, Cañete, and Huancavelica. The site of the RMF clinic is in San Clemente, Pisco. San Clemente is the poorest district of Pisco and the overwhelming majority cannot afford to pay for health services. In addition, outreach programs have been initiated to service the health needs in the very remote and impoverished areas around San Clemente and Pisco.
Photo: Children celebrating the RMF sponsored Christmas "Chocolatada" party
San Clemente is a very impoverished area and all of the services offered are free. The clinic places much importance on prevention and education and this is evident within all facets of the clinic’s operations.
The new location for the Policlínico Peruano Americano opened its doors on March 21, 2011 on Calle 10 de Septiembre Nº 101 in San Clemente. Operating Hours: 7am – 4 pm
– Treatment of acute and chronic illnesses in the urgent care center “Policlínico Peruano Americano.” San Clemente is a very impoverished area and all services are offered free of charge. Much attention is given towards prevention and health education within all facets of the clinic’s operations.
– To improve the comprehensive health of the community through outreach programs, educational programs, and public health initiatives.
Results and/or accomplishments achieved during this reporting period:
- Starting on October 1st, Dr. Mabel joined the clinic’s medical staff and is performing very well with medical care and performing ultrasounds.
- Clinic staff purchased a DVD and educational videos to keep patients informed while waiting their turn in the waiting room.
- Two more Pap Smear Campaigns were conducted in October and November.
- During the months of November and December the RMF Peru team organized several campaigns and also made sure there was always a doctor in attendance at the clinic while the rest of the staff conducted outreach (photos of campaigns in success story section):
- Pap Smear Campaigns with 9 patients total
- On November 6th, Nurse Leila conducted a height/weight campaign at 4 schools with a total of 165 children.
- On the 8th and 30th of November, Dr. Luisa, Dr. Mabel and Nurse Leila conducted a Fluoride campaign at one local school with a total of 1,982 patients.
- On the 28th of November, Dr. David and Victoria conducted a campaign of De-Worming with a total of 147 patients.
- On the 4th and 5th of December, a Fluoride Campaign was conducted at another local school with 320 patients.
- On the 12th of December a psychology workshop organized by Leila and conducted by Psychiatrist Elmer Quintanilla with 3rd, 4th and 5th graders about the topic of “Stop the Bullying”; 70 students participated.
- On the 21st of December, a De-Worming Campaign was conducted by Victoria with 66 patients attending.
- The dentist also came to campaign in schools in the area.
- Proceeds from the lab in November and December was $130.00
- This year, 200 children benefited from the RMF sponsored Chocolatada Christmas Party held at the Municipal Town Hall center (see photos in success stories).
- The Milagritos Laboratory donated 50 bags of goodies to the Chocolatada party.
Number served/number of direct project beneficiaries.
Total Number of Direct Beneficiaries: 3,073
Policlínico Peruano Americano
- Patients Seen: 3,073
- Average per day: 51.21
- New Patients: 399
- Male: 974
- Female: 2,099
- <1 years: 258
- 1 – 5 years: 804
- 6 – 14 years: 227
- 15 – 24 years: 146
- 25 – 39 years: 152
- 20 – 59 years: 1,410
- 60+ years: 70
Success story(s) highlighting project impact:
Lucio Huaca Anampa, widower, 77 years old, from San Mateo in the Apurimac region of the province of Abancay. His wife had died shortly after the earthquake and he currently lives with his daughter Manco Capac Isabel, 53 years old, a teacher with 2 young sons, the house has water and electricity services but no sewage/drainage system.
Lucio arrived at the clinic presenting with fever, throat pain, and a persistent cough that had left him not sleeping for two days. A clinical examination was performed and he was diagnosed with a chronic pharyngitis. He was given a Penicillin injection and anti-inflammatory treatment, and instructions to gargle with Acetyl Red for three days. After 5 days he returned to the clinic for another consultation and was feeling much better and his discomfort was greatly relieved.
Petronila Quispe Mendoza, 95 years old, has been living in a house built of reeds and sticks for about 5 years since she had lost her home due to the earthquake. She has been a widow for 30 years from the region of Ayacucho – Huancano. She has 6 children and the youngest of her children takes care of her. They came to the clinic and her child told us that his mother does not recognize people and has to be accompanied as her eyes are damaged. She also came to the clinic presenting with head pain and a burning stomach. She was diagnosed with hypertension and chronic gastritis but did not appear to have glaucoma. She was given treatment for her gastritis and will be followed up with for her hypertension.
Ms. Emiliana Flores Choque, widow, 69 years old, born in the region of Huancavelica. She has five children, one of whom died at the age of 8 years of pneumonia, and her husband died one year ago. She arrived at the clinic with asthma that she has been suffering with for the past 6 years. She also suffers from pulmonary fibrosis disease, possibly made worse by the practice of burning wood and donkey dung for heating. She has been under treatment with Salbutamol, but her persistent cough makes it difficult to sleep. Medical treatment is given at the clinic with synchronized nebulization at the clinic for evaluation, and a nebulization with Salbutamol at home at night, Corticosteroid treatment, and hypertension treatment with Captopril 25 mg. She will return to the clinic for additional monitoring.
Marca Sanchez Regina is the two year old daughter of Ana Sanchez Flores, 17 years old, both natives of the region of Ayacucho – Victor Fajardo Province. The mother tells us that the father of Marca only occasionally sends money for food. Ana does some agricultural work and washes other families’ clothes when she can and lives with her married brother and his family. Ana brought Marca to the clinic presenting fever for two days, and the tests at the clinic indicated her weight down to the level of malnutrition; she also had a buccal mucosa injury that was hindering feeding because of a congested pharynx. Further diagnosis found a case of tonsillitis (250 mg Amoxicillin treatment, Ibuprofen 100 mg) and oral thrush, which was treated with 250 Amoxicillin, 100mg of Ibuprofen, and a mouthwash with baking soda. Further followup at the clinic was recommended to track Marca’s progress.