Spring 2020 News

From the Field

Are hospitals good for the health of our communities? At first glance, you might say, “of course!” But peel off a few layers and you might find some sticky questions. Why do hospitals and hospital procedures cost so much? Does the health benefit they provide justify the cost, especially when compared to other health interventions outside of the hospital? As just one example, how does the impact of a $15,000 heart bypass surgery compare to 15,000 vaccinations at $1 each? Likewise, we often wonder why so many health dollars are spent near the end of life for sometimes seemingly needless interventions, when less costly and often more humane palliative or hospice care options are readily available…


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Coronavirus Update

March 26, 2020

Ecuador has the most cases in South America behind Brazil. There are 1,211 confirmed cases today, and that is with limited testing available. AHD’s hospitals are prepared to receive the Ministry of Health’s overflow patients any day now.

March 23, 2020

Dear AHD Family,

Ecuador is suffering. The Minister of Health just resigned, and as of today, no additional public funding has been budgeted for this epidemic. Frankly, I’m stunned at their complete lack of response regarding resources and funding given that we’re on lockdown and our borders are closing. The number of cases double daily down here, and that’s only what we know from limited testing capability. The public sector will soon be overwhelmed. Our medical staff is prepared, and we have protocols in place. We recognize there is suffering everywhere around the globe, but please keep Ecuador in your thoughts. We have started a COVID-19 emergency fund for these underserved people. Please consider donating.


March 12, 2020

Coronavirus is here in Ecuador. Given the community transmission that we’ve seen in other countries, there is a high probability that it will spread fast in a low-resource setting like Ecuador. Handwashing and hygiene in Ecuador are not nearly at the level of the United States.

We are preparing ourselves to collaborate with the federal government and social security system to help manage patients in our catchment areas. When this becomes a major public health problem, the public system will collapse quickly. We have set up a tent outside our hospital to triage patients as to keep them separated from the other patients in the lobbies and waiting rooms. We have protocols in place for our medical professionals.

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