Seen in Belize that Connects in Class

What’s an example (or story) of something you’ve seen in Belize that connects with something we discussed in class?

Over the course of the class we discussed global health initiatives as well as the difficulties in implementing them. In class during presentations many of us came up with, or explored solutions for many of the problems faced with healthcare in developing nations. Many of the solutions we explored sounded very plausible and feasible at a surface level, but then we dug down into deeper levels of the issues we would find things that would make the solution extremely hard to implement. This is something I observed very frequently while in Belize. One of the biggest issues Dr. Sansorez told me was that healthcare and medication in Belize is typically free, or at a very small cost and so people start to take it for granted. One patient specifically was on blood pressure medication and she stopped taking it because she was tired of taking it. Dr. Sansorez said that because medication is typically free people may stop taking it because they know that if they need more they can get it at any time. If they did charge some amount for medicine people may be more inclined to take it because they will know they spent money on it and now must make the most of it. Even though this woman stopped taking her medication because she didn’t feel like taking it anymore I thought it was very interesting that Dr. Sansorez prescribed her three more types of medication (Captopril, ASA, and Ravtadine) because if the woman already didn’t feel like taking her current medication, why would she want to take three more types. I know there is not much else that could have been done but I think there is only so much we can do for people. We can tell people to do something but it does not mean they will actually do it. Non-compliance especially with medication is a big problem we talked about in class that I noticed in Belize. It was on multiple occasions with patients that they had medication given to them already but they just did not take it. I think placing emphasis on the importance of compliance when giving medications would be very useful in getting people to keep taking their medication. If patients were given some sort of tracking device for taking the medication or were given some incentive to take it would help with compliance. In all global health issues, we would need to properly educate on things like compliance and the importance of taking medication so that people do not begin taking advantage of the system.

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