Fundación Salud Amazónica
Country of Operation
SummaryThe Fundación Salud Amazónica (Amazonian Health Foundation) is focused on the prevention and promotion of health, especially in rural areas where it can be difficult to maintain a high standard of living and good health.
The program aims to have trained and certified promoters of health available to people in communities far from major urban centres. The training process normally consists in three workshops per year, each for five consecutive days. This process has been completed, and certificates endorsed by the Ministry of Public Health have been delivered.
Key program components
The Foundation carries out its work in the following areas: organizing, production, sexual and reproductive health rights, the right to live without violence, education and communication. Great emphasis is placed on providing women with specialized information, such as gender equality. However, men as well as women are targeted in order to strengthen organizational capacity and leadership within indigenous and mestizo communities. _Health Service Delivery:_ The Foundation operates a Health Center which provides general medicine and pediatric attention, dentistry, and laboratory testing. All services offered are provided at low costs. They have recently begun work focused especially on youth, which has required consideration of the social and cultural relationships which affect this particular group. They address this topic in coordination with other organizations, including the Ayllu Huarmi Cuna Foundation, local government, the Ministry of Health, Education, and Environment, various committees, Francisco de Orellana’s anti-violence network, and Joya de los Sachas and Loreto, among others. _Health Promoter Training:_ The Fundación Salud Amazónica trains and certifies rural community members as Health Promoters. This process normally consists of three five-day workshops a year; upon completion of the workshops each participant is awarded a certificate notarized by the Ministry of Public Health. Promoters are responsible for replicating what they have learned and facilitating educational discussions within their communities. They are also responsible for supervising medication prescriptions, providing injections, and providing guidance in regards to the appropriate use of medication. They are not meant to provide formal medical services, but rather to provide support. Promoters do not charge for their services; the work they do is voluntary. However, they are able to sell medication (which is provided via donations) at low prices. The Foundation’s community health positions, which form the base of the Foundation’s operations, promote the services provided in order to gain the attention of the community and successfully distribute medication. _Laboratory Testing:_ The Foundation is currently in the process of creating a laboratory which will focus on the analysis of HIV as well as other syndromes and illnesses which put lives at risk. They also utilize two specific software packages for medication management and data analysis. _Health Education:_ Finally, the Foundation provides trainings in terms of sexual and reproductive rights, gender equality, and non-violence. These training, which culminate in the award of certificates notarized by the Ministry of Education, are directed towards school-aged youth and women, who request the courses based on their own initiative.
The Foundation served 50,000 clients in its first 18 years.