Ochomogo

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

Overview

Ochomogo is located in the pacific region of southern Nicaragua in the department of El Carazo. A typical house is made of cement block. The community has access to a health center in the neighboring community, Los Braziles, 6 Km away. Within Ochomogo is a multigrade primary school. 42 students attend the primary school with three teachers and two classrooms. The primary school goes up to grade six, and there is no secondary school located in Ochomogo. Most people in the community work as agricultural laborers.

Global Brigades is currently hosting Medical Brigades in a nearby community, La Vainilla, that community members from Ochomogo attend. Medical Brigades began in March 2018. In June 2017, Global Brigades partnered with a Nicaraguan NGO, Fundacion San Lucas to construct a water system. In their first communications with Global Brigades, the top three needs expressed were lack of latrines or properly functioning latrines, limited access to potable water, and needed road infrastructure. Ochomogo is on the waitlist for continuing Holistic Model implementation as part of Global Brigades’ strategic plan in Nicaragua.

Municipality: Santa Teresa

Department: El Carazo

Homes : 74
Population : 250
Water System : Yes
Community Bank : No
Electricity : Yes
Health Center : Yes
Community Health Workers : Yes
% of Homes with Latrines : 13.5%
Education : Up to 6th Grade
Distance from Lodging Facility : 1 hr

Medical

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

HEALTH CARE ACCESS:

Healthcare access in Nicaragua is structured by the Ministry of Health, based in the capital, Managua. From there, each of the fifteen departments has it’s own department hospital, which is overseen by the SILAIS administrations (Sistema Local de Atención Integral en Salud). At a municipality level, there is a health center (Centro de Salud) for every municipality within the department. While they are not hospitals, health centers in the municipality are typically staffed with one doctor, and two nurses, that can attend patients with chronic, communicable, or noncommunicable diseases, as well as pregnancies. They however, do not have the ability to perform surgeries. Lastly, most but not all communities have a Puesto de Salud, a smaller health center. These health centers are usually staffed with only one nurse and a rotating physician. Physicians are staffed in these health centers by Nicaragua’s Social Service. This is an initiative that requires Nicaraguan medical students to do two years of service in rural communities prior to graduating.  The physician density in Nicaragua is approximately 1,099 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. This density is significantly lower for the 40.6% of the population that lives in rural areas. It is for this reason that Nicaragua’s Social Service initiative brings medical students to these communities. However, access remains limited since these training physicians may be assigned to up to fifteen communities at a time.  

Ochomogo has access to a health center in a neighboring community, Los Braziles, 6 Km away. Even with this access, it is important to note that medications, supplies, and materials are often not available in these health centers and are dependent on government funding. There is no access to private pharmacies. Additionally, as noted above, access to trained medical professionals is limited.

During their initial communications with Global Brigades, the top three illnesses in children that Ochomogo expressed were diarrhoeal diseases, fevers, and vomiting. For adults, common illnesses are chronic diseases such as heart conditions and hypertension, as well as diarrhoeal diseases. Without access to trained healthcare professionals and medications, chronic diseases can go unmanaged, leading to further health problems. Acute illnesses can also be severe and affect the quality of life.

*These statistics represent brigades in the community of La Vainilla, where community members from Ochomogo attend Medical Brigades.

37*

Brigade Volunteers

434*

Patient Consultations

35*

Pap Smears Performed

6*

Health Education Workshops

COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKER:

Ochomogo has four Community Health Workers that are trained by the Ministry of Health monthly. Community Health Workers, or Brigadistas de Salud, work on a volunteer basis as advocates for healthcare within their communities. They are tasked with treating and preventing common illnesses, and some of their responsibilities include first aid, supporting and caring for pregnancies and newborns, and responding to emergency situations. They are also responsible for following up with chronic patients to ensure proper administration of medications and treatments to avoid further complications. Global Brigades is planning to establish a partnership with Ochomogo Community Health Workers and the Ministry of Health, and is looking forward to providing these Community Health Workers with blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, glucometers, and first aid kits, to facilitate more impactful work. 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:

Community members from Ochomogo attend Medical Brigades in the health center of La Vainilla. This location has rooms for triage, consultation, dentistry and pharmacy stations. The average amount of patients seen per day is 145 patients.

Ochomogo offers strong support on Medical Brigades from the community volunteers. One way the 8-15 community volunteers assist is by running intake. Intake is the very first station of the clinic and is where the community volunteers write down the patient’s name, date of birth, community, and identification number. Additionally, community volunteers manage clinic organization. They set up tables and chairs in the clinic prior to the brigade’s arrival as well as direct patients to the next medical station, once the clinic has opened for the day. Lastly, community volunteers lead adult health education sessions on sanitation and hygiene, chronic diseases, contraception, Women’s health, and water purification. Ochomogo’s community volunteers are essential the efficiency and effectiveness of Medical Brigades.

AVERAGE PATIENTS ATTENDED PER DAY: 145

NEARBY COMMUNITIES: SANTA JERTRUDIS, EL SERO, LOS GOMES, JAVITO, LA HORMIGA, LA VAINILLA

BRIGADE SITE: HEALTH CENTER

 

MEDICAL BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
Rutgers University March 2018 37

Dental

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

DENTAL CARE ACCESS:

While medical access is low, dental access is even more sparing. Dental services are not available within the community health centers, or even the municipality health centers. Instead, if a patient was needing dental care, they would be required to travel to one of the country’s fifteen department hospitals. This could be up to a 2-3 hour bus ride, with many needing to first walk or horseback ride to the bus stop.

*These statistics represent brigades in the community of La Vainilla, where community members from Ochomogo attend Dental Brigades.

92*

Patients Consultations

94*

Flouride Treatments

42*

Fillings Performed

6*

Dental Education Workshops

BRIGADE INFORMATION:

Working closely with the Medical Program, the Dental Program provides fillings, extractions, and fluoride treatments as a standard part of medical brigades. Community members from Ochomogo attend Dental Brigades in the health center of La Vainilla. The average amount of patients seen per day is 31 patients, with approximately 10-15 minutes per patient.

Ochomogo offers strong support on Dental Brigades from the community volunteers. One way the 8-15 community volunteers assist is by running intake. Intake is the very first station of the clinic and is where the community volunteers write down the patient’s name, date of birth, community, and identification number. Additionally, community volunteers manage clinic organization. They set up tables and chairs in the clinic prior to the brigade’s arrival as well as direct patients to the next medical station, once the clinic has opened for the day. Lastly, community volunteers lead adult health education sessions on oral health and hygiene. Ochomogo’s community volunteers are essential the efficiency and effectiveness of Dental Brigades.

AVERAGE PATIENTS ATTENDED PER DAY: 31

NEARBY COMMUNITIES: SANTA JERTRUDIS, EL SERO, LOS GOMES, JAVITO, LA HORMIGA, LA VAINILLA

BRIGADE SITE: HEALTH CENTER

DENTAL BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
Rutgers University March 2018 37

Water

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

OCHOMOGO WATER CHALLENGE:

Prior to Global Brigades involvement, Ochomogo had one gravity-based system that reached only 21% of the homes in community. This system had been constructed by the government in 2010. Additionally six households were able to source water from a communal well with a manual pump, but often had to carry water for long distances. The remaining majority of the community relied on hand-dug wells. These types of wells are filled only by rainwater and are extremely vulnerable to drought during the dry season (November- May). 

Limited availability of water during drought affects life in many ways. Water is a necessity in the home; used for cooking, washing clothes, and bathing. Additionally farmers are not able to keep livestock and crops healthy, which can lead to a loss of income.

 

47

Water Brigade Volunteers

275

Meters of Piping Installed

100%

Percentage of System Completed

200

Project Beneficiaries

OCHOMOGO WATER SOLUTION:

From June to August 2017, Global Brigades sent 47 volunteers to partner with community members from Ochomogo, and Fundacion San Lucas (Nicaraguan NGO partner). The water system constructed now consists of a drilled well, storage tank, pump, water distribution network, and household taps. The water pump is powered by solar energy in order to reduce greenhouse gas emission, as well as decrease dependence on conventional electric energy.

Prior to Global Brigades joining this project, Fundacion San Lucas had built the system to supply 77% of the community’s households. With Global Brigades additional contribution of volunteer labor and $4,000 in funds, the remaining non-connected houses were able to be added to the system. Following Global Brigades partnership, 100% of the community gained access to clean drinking water!

Fundacion San Lucas hosted an inauguration of the system October 2017. Prior to the celebration, system tests were conducted to guarantee that the water was potable and had sufficient flow rate. Water quality results indicated the water was safe for drinking.

WATER BRIGADES IN THE COMMUNITY:

Chapter Date # Of Volunteers Chapter Date # Of Volunteers
University College London/ London School of Economics June 2017 9 University of Maryland/ University of Ottawa August 2017 38

Business

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

Global Brigades is working on the implementation of the Holistic Model in Ochomogo but has not yet begun with the Business Program. In the planning phase, local staff is working with community members to assess the economic needs of the community, establish a community bank, and identify micro-enterprises that can benefit from on-brigade consultations. 

Community Bank : No
Community Bank Members : None
Economic Activities : Agriculture
Existing Microenterprises : Chicken farms, small shops

Public Health

Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete

Global Brigades is working on the implementation of the Holistic Model in Ochomogo 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.

% of Homes with Latrines : 13.5%
% of Homes with Showers : 1%
% of Homes with Washing Station : 20%
Common House Materials : Cement block

Local Reference Points

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

  • Feature