Latin American countries are labeled as developing countries, known as those with an economy under construction or that is going through a process of evolution. However, this style of economy has allowed for certain countries to accomplish great advances in the healthcare area. For example: in Argentina, by the end of 2017 there had been a total of 2,500 transplants executed, of which 1.700 were of solid organs such as the liver.
It is worth mentioning that these advances are not palpable and do not correspond to the majority of the nations in the region. Since these countries are in constant development of policies and laws that improve the quality of life of their people, these take some time to execute and only in time is it possible to see the results.
According to a statement by Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank, two thirds of the population don’t have access to medical services such as surgeries, anesthesia and obstetrics of quality, safe, and affordable for their socioeconomic status. The World Bank also states that in developing countries, the majority of their population does not have salaries that cover these kinds of procedures without risking poverty.
Currently, the Latin American and Caribbean population is at risk of a 20% to a 60% possibility of going bankrupt if submitted to medical procedures. Haiti presents the biggest risk of all, with 58% of its population, while Uruguay has a risk of only 1.7% making it the Latin American country with the least possibility of poverty.
Along with the problems mentioned before, there is evidence that Latin American and Caribbean countries present a major risk of suffering lethal illnesses such as cardiovascular problems or liver disease, where the treatments are expensive, risky and because of their low socioeconomic status, they are unable to afford them. These types of illnesses are among the 10 causes of death in the region.
Because of this, there have emerged different programs in countries like Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Chile and Venezuela, that work towards providing citizens with the possibility of covering the cost for these types of procedures or treatments. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) around 600 children with liver complications are born in the region each year, and most of them live in families with limited resources.
In order to help solve the problems in the region, Dr. Pedro Rivas and Dr. Tomoaki Kato founded Fundahígado America on the year 2011, seeking to train health professionals and to help pediatric liver patients that don’t have opportunity for survival in their countries of origin.
An excellent example of this labor is the Metropolitan Liver Transplantation Program-FundaHigado, the only one that remains active in Venezuela.
Nowadays, and after detecting these deficiencies in countries such as Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Guatemala and Peru, Fundahígado America remains in constant negotiations to achieve the implementation of the program that promises to save lives in these nations throughout the improvement of the hospital or clinic infrastructure and to make liver transplantations possible within their own facilities. Fundahígado America, also monitors a sustainability plan focused on the competence of medical staff aiming to achieve implementation in various nations.
If your wish to contribute and help children and adults that are facing liver disease, do not hesitate to ask for more information about them and the foundation through their website FundaHigado America Here you may also find more information about their programs and how your country may join the cause, promoting its importance and how it may significantly improve the life of this population.