In Guatemala, rural, poor, indigenous communities are the ones with the least infrastructure for health services. People who live there have very few options when it comes to their fundamental right to health. Public health centers are usually understaffed and lack sufficient medical supplies. With over half of the population living on less than a $1 a day, healthcare becomes a luxury.
Petronila owns a “tortilleria” in San Pablo, where she works with her mom. Their main source of income is making and selling tortillas for breakfast, lunch and dinner. She lives with her two daughters and with her son-in-law. She first came for a consultation when she realized that food tasted different “everything was very sweet to me”. She was diagnosed with diabetes, and that changed her life.
She realized that she was going to need constant visits to the doctor and access to medicine if she wanted to continue living her normal life. The idea of having to buy medicine every month was daunting, she didn’t know how she would be able to afford it.
The people from San Pablo and San Juan La Laguna don’t have a lot of options when it comes to healthcare. Both towns have a local Health Center, which is supposed to provide free consultations and medicine. However, they usually don’t have enough medicine for everyone. Patients cannot rely on state funded services to have access to what they need. Depending on public health centers is very risky, especially when you need monthly treatments.
On the other hand, private doctors charge 5 times more what we charge in our clinics, and laboratory tests and medicine are never included. This is not really an option for most people living in our communities.
It’s been three years since Petronila was first diagnosed. Luckily, she found Chuitinamit Clinic. Our diabetic patients pay a little bit less than our other patients (less than $2), because they need monthly checkups. Every consultation includes the laboratory tests and the medicine they need. “This has been a huge help for me. I don’t worry anymore, because I know that I’ll always get my medicine and I’ll be able to keep my sugar levels controlled. If it wasn’t for the clinic, I don’t know what I would do to treat my diabetes”.
Our clinics exist to provide compassionate, competent and comprehensive medical care.
You can help us keep our clinics open and continue to provide medicine to the people in our communities. Your donation can give someone access to healthcare and medication. Donate to our Clinical Services, to provide health services to our patients in San Pablo and San Juan La Laguna.