Nuevo Progreso – Global Brigades

Nuevo Progreso

  • Overview
  • Medical
  • Dental
  • Water
  • Business
  • Public Health

Overview

Nuevo Progreso is located in the province of Darien, close to the eastern end of the Panamerican highway. Global Brigades began working with this community in 2015. A typical house in Nuevo Progreso is made of wood. The community has a primary school that offers kindergarten to 6th grade. To attend middle or high school, children must travel to the nearby city of Yaviza, which is 30 minutes away by bus. Most of the community members work in agriculture (farming rice and corn) and the sale of artisan crafts. There is no health outpost in Nuevo Progreso, so community members must travel by bus to the nearest clinic in Yaviza to be attended by a healthcare professional. Nuevo Progreso has a water system built in 1984, but the water arrives unfiltered and often the pressure is too low. The top needs expressed by the community were improvements to their water system and more economic opportunities.

Corregimiento: Yaviza
District: Pinogana

Homes : 150
Population : 300
Water System : Yes, but needs improvements
Community Bank : Yes
Electricity : Yes
Health Center : No, closest in Yaviza (20-30min by bus)
Community Health Workers : 1
Homes with Latrines : 100%
Education in the Community : Up to 6th grade
Distance from Closest Lodging Facility : 1.5 hours

Medical

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

HEALTH CARE ACCESS

Even though Panama is a country with a lot of economic growth, this growth does not apply equally to all Panamanians, especially those in rural areas. This results in stark inequality when it comes to healthcare access. The Panamanian Ministry of Health (MINSA) provides two different types of health facilities throughout rural Panama: Centros de Salud and Puestos de Salud. Centros are the larger of the two, often found in municipalities, and typically have at least one physician on staff at all times with nurses and potentially a dentist. Puestos are found sporadically in rural communities and generally have a single nurse available. 

Even with this coverage, the Centros frequently lack a full pharmacy and the staff capacity to see every patient each day. After walking long distances or paying for a bus, rural visitors to the Centros can expect long wait times given the limited staff and resources to meet the demand from all neighboring communities. The physician density in Panama remains around 630 people for every one doctor. According to the World Health Organization, there should be a maximum of 435 people per physician to qualify a country as having adequate access to medical attention.

The closest Puesto de Salud is in the nearby community of Canglón, and the nearest Centro de Salud for Nuevo Progreso is about 30 minutes down the highway by bus in the town of Yaviza. The most common illnesses reported by community members in Nuevo Progreso are common colds, diarrhea, and skin infections.

26

Volunteers

373

Patient Consultations

N/A

Health Education Workshops

N/A

Vision Screenings Provided

COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKERS:

A group of CHWs from East Panama, trained in 2017

Nuevo Progreso has 1 Community Health Worker that was trained by Global Brigades. Community Health Workers, or Agentes Comunitarios en Salud (ACeS), work on a volunteer basis as advocates for healthcare within their communities. Their primary responsibilities include: educating community members to prevent common illnesses, providing emergency first aid, supporting pregnant mothers and newborns, and following up with chronic patients. The presence of these volunteers and their advocacy for health within their community contributes to the sustainability of healthcare supported by Global Brigades’ Medical Program and is one of the most impactful disease prevention strategies in rural communities.

BRIGADE INFORMATION

Medical and Dental Brigade clinics are hosted in Nuevo Progreso’s school building. The various stations of the clinic are held in the classrooms. Each day of the brigade, an average of 2 educational workshops or charlas are facilitated with the clinic’s patients.

  • AVERAGE PATIENTS ATTENDED: 287

MEDICAL/DENTAL VOLUNTEERS IN NUEVO PROGRESO

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
Northwestern University & University of California Davis Medical Brigade March 2019 26

Dental

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

DENTAL CARE ACCESS

In working closely with the medical program, the dental program provides fillings, extractions, and fluoride treatments as a standard part of medical brigades. Most community members do not have regular access to dental care due to the lack of dentist within a reasonable distance.

201

Dental Patient Consultations

39

Extractions

130

Flouride Treatments

N/A

Fillings

BRIGADE INFORMATION

A dental charla at a clinic in Ipeti Emberá, Panama

Medical and Dental Brigade clinics are hosted in Nuevo Progreso’s school building. The various stations of the clinic are held in the classrooms. Each day of the brigade, an average of 2 educational workshops or charlas are facilitated with the clinic’s patients.

  • AVERAGE PATIENTS ATTENDED: 287

MEDICAL/DENTAL VOLUNTEERS IN NUEVO PROGRESO

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
Northwestern University & University of California Davis Medical Brigade March 2019 26

Water

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

Global Brigades is working on the implementation of the Holistic Model in Nuevo Progreso but has not yet begun with the Water Program. Now in the planning phase, the financing, delivery, and installation of a water system infrastructure, or repairs to existing infrastructure will start as soon as feasible.

Water System : Yes, but not functioning
System Type : Surface Water with Pump
Homes Connected to Water : 0 (system non-functional)
Water Council : Yes

Business

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

NUEVO PROGRESO’S ECONOMIC CHALLENGE

Community members in Nuevo Progreso lack access to financial resources within the community. The majority of community members do not have bank accounts and there are only limited informal forms of credit available.  For example, a person could obtain ‘credit’ at a local store by buying something now and paying later, simply adding it to their ‘tab,’ but there would be no formalized credit transaction.  Larger financial institutions do not approve loans to community members without a fixed income, making it difficult for local micro-enterprises to grow and thrive. Most community members cite the distance to the nearest bank as the main discouragement to having a personal savings account. Even if individuals wish to travel the distance, not all community members can become members of these financial institutions–cooperatives require monthly membership fees, savings accounts often require a fixed income, and the cost of travel provides an additional barrier.

N/A

Volunteers

13

Saving Accounts Opened

124

Loans Disbursed

$1,028

Capital Invested

NUEVO PROGRESO’S MICROFINANCE SOLUTION

GB Panama Director checking in with bank leaders at the 2017 Caja Summit

The Global Brigades Business and Microfinance Team trained a new Community Bank that opened in March 2015. Field technicians have provided initial training to the Community Bank to prepare the executive board to manage bookkeeping and the process of managing savings accounts and loans. This encouraged the opening of more savings accounts, growth of seed capital, and upon the completion of six months of executive board training, the Community Bank began giving out loans to bank members to spur economic growth and home improvement projects.

NUEVO PROGRESO’S BUSINESS SOLUTION

In addition to the Community Bank, Global Brigades supports established and start-up micro-enterprises. Agro-businesses are prominent forms of commerce within this community and adequate book-keeping and maintaining relationships with customers, as well as proper agriculture cultivation can lead to increased revenues for business owners and employees.

Global Brigades is currently in the planning phase of hosting Business Brigades in Nuevo Progreso. Business consulting will begin as soon as it is feasible.

Public Health

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

Global Brigades is working on the implementation of the Holistic Model in Nuevo Progreso but has not yet begun with the Public Health Program. Now in the planning phase, the financing, delivery, and installation of household health infrastructure products will start as soon as feasible.

Homes with flushing toilets : N/A
Homes with latrines : 100%
Homes with baths/showers : N/A
Common House Materials : Wood

Local Reference Points

View the map to see the closest volunteer lodging facilities, hospitals, and other relevant points of reference.

  • Feature