Partner for Surgery, Guatemala
Timmy and Partner for Surgery seek to strengthen their rural outreach, increase capacity to find and treat surgical cases, and improve Timmy’s ability to connect primary care patients to quality healthcare services.
Since 2001, Partner for Surgery has been providing surgery and health education to those with the greatest need in remote parts of Guatemala. Partner for Surgery exists because they have identified certain barriers to surgical care in Guatemala, including:
-Lack of experience with major medical care
-Fear of health centers & hospitals among Guatemalan communities
-Discrimination against certain individuals based on ethnicity, and financial resources
-Lack of information about available surgical opportunities
-Limited financial resources to pay medical bills
-Poor access to transportation and limited experience with travelling beyond a person’s own community
-Communication issues—many patients speak Mayan languages and don’t understand the Spanish spoken in hospitals
-By utilizing community partnerships and radio broadcasts, Partner for Surgery helps patients overcome these healthcare barriers in order to receive the treatment they deserve and require.
Timmy and Partner for Surgery first teamed up in 2010 to better address the healthcare challenges of low-income communities in Guatemala. Through this partnership, patients in need of certain types of surgeries who come to Timmy medical brigades, the Pop-Wuj clinic, or who are seen by Pop-Wuj’s mobile medical clinics throughout Quetzaltenango are referred to Partner for Surgery to receive free surgical treatment. As a result, Timmy has added a triage component to medical service trips in 2011, allowing Partner for Surgery to treat patients from areas that they could not otherwise have reached.
Our Outreach, Projects, and Solutions
Our first referred Timmy patient, a 6 year old girl, underwent a successful cleft palate repair during a Partner for Surgery – Plastic Surgery brigade in February of 2011. The family was very excited about this opportunity and very thankful for the opportunity to provide a better, healthier future for their young daughter.
Timmy and Partner for Surgery’s collaboration marks a giant step forward for Timmy’s medical programming in Guatemala. Working together, both organizations seek to strengthen their rural outreach, increase Partner for Surgery’s capacity to find and treat surgical cases throughout rural Guatemala, and improve Timmy’s ability to connect our primary care patients to more advanced, quality healthcare services. As the collaboration deepens, Timmy’s growing network of student volunteers will continue to provide behind the scenes support – fundraising, advocating, and serving not only on behalf of Pop-Wuj, but also on behalf of Partner for Surgery’s Guatemala programming.