BENEFITING: Central American Relief Efforts
In 2014, Central American Relief Efforts treated over 15,000 Honduran patients in its medical clinics with volunteer groups from the United States. Yet there are still many, many Hondurans who may have access to a physician but not to affordable medicine. These people often cannot afford both the transportation to the nearest city where they could purchase medicine and the medicine itself once they get to a hospital or pharmacy.
To maintain our presence year-round and continue to ensure access to when we do not have volunteer groups on-site, we have opened five self-sustaining pharmacies in our work zone in southern Honduras. Working through our Honduran Advisory Board, C.A.R.E. finds suitable locations to locate self-sustaining pharmacies and trains the personnel to operate them. We install the pharmacies in central locations within regions where it is difficult to travel to a larger city to purchase much needed medicines. This way, hundreds of families can access each pharmacy. Because we purchase medicines in bulk to supply all of our medical clinics throughout the year as well as all of our self-sustaining pharmacies, we are able to pass the bulk price cut on to the community members who end up purchasing the medicine, making these medications more financially accessible to the struggling populations these pharmacies serve.
To continue to increase accessibility to healthcare services and medicines in our work zone, our goal for the next 12 months is to open five new self-sustaining pharmacies in the region. Each pharmacy costs $2,500 to start. The majority of this cost is for the initial stock of medicine, the rest covers costs of installing adequate shelving in the pharmacy space as well as training the pharmacist. The pharmacist sells the medicines at a 20-percent markup to ensure there is adequate money to resupply the medicines sold and to provide some compensation to them for their work. C.A.R.E. has maintained our current pharmacies for years, and we have found the program to be a huge benefit to the surrounding communities.
Join us by contributing what you can to make a difference in the lives of so many impoverished people who otherwise lack access to basic medicines.