Friday, November 5, 2010

Pregnant Woman and Her Mother--Medical Emergency


Yolanda de la Cruz Tubac and her husband, Moises, lost their home and all their possessions to a mudslide earlier this year.  Tropical storm Agatha destroyed their crops, and left Moises, a farmer, without a livelihood.  They and their three small children (aged 9, 5, and almost 2) had to crowd into a rented home with three other families. 

As if this weren’t enough misfortune for one year, Yolanda, who is 8 months pregnant, just found out that she has a hernia on her umbilical cord.  Though this condition requires an operation, it is too dangerous to do it at this point in the pregnancy—having the operation now could kill her or the baby.  Doctors have told her that she must wait 3 weeks on complete bed rest before having the surgery. 

Moises, since he has been unable to farm, has been doing his best to support his family by working as a day laborer, which means that his pay is very unsteady.  At most, he earns about 210Q (~$26) per week—not enough to support his wife and three children, much less pay for this emergency.  Doctors here in Panajachel have agreed to perform the surgery at the much-reduced price of 5760Q ($720), but even with this discount Yolanda and Moises don’t have the funds to pay for the operation.

Yolanda and her family live several hours away in Chimaltenango, but the doctor in Panajachel has instructed her to stay close by in case there is an emergency. Yolanda will have to stay here in Pana with her mother while she waits in bed.  Unfortunately, Yolanda’s mother, Rosa, is in the midst of her own medical crisis.  Rosa has been working hard to support Yolanda’s younger siblings since her husband died three years ago, but this week she fell ill with intense stomach pains.  She went to the Centro de Salud (Pana’s free public clinic), but the doctor barely examined her.  Instead, he gave her some cheap pain medicine and sent her on her way. 

Not surprisingly, Rosa’s condition got worse, but the Centro de Salud refuses to take her case seriously.  She would like to go to a private clinic to have a real examination, but she cannot afford the cost.  Her pains are intensifying, and she still does not know the cause, let alone how much an effective treatment would be.

Please help us get Yolanda and her baby their lifesaving surgery, bring Rosa to a doctor she can count on, and help the family keep food on the table during this crisis.  A donation of any amount will bring us closer to achieving those goals.  To support this family, click here, scroll down to the Family Aid box, write the amount of your donation.  To donate towards Rosa's care enter FA56 under Family Name; to donate towards Yolanda's, enter FA44.

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