Santa Marta

  • Overview
  • Medical
  • Dental


Santa Marta is located in the province of Coclé, west of Panama City. The community is comprised of mostly Latino families. A typical house there is made of concrete blocks. Santa Marta has a primary school that offers from kindergarten to 6th grade. Most of the community members work in agriculture or unskilled labor. There is a small health post in the community which is sometimes attended by a health assistant. The nearest health center is in the community of El Cope, which means community members must wait for a bus and pay each way to visit a doctor. All of the homes in Santa Marta are connected to a gravity-fed aqueduct, but the water must be rationed sometimes in the dry season. 100% of homes in the community have sanitation services (either pit latrines or flushing toilets). Santa Marta does not have a community bank that offers savings and loans services. The top needs expressed by the community were: electricity, easier access to secondary education, and improved sanitation services.

District: La Pintada

Province: Coclé

Homes : 180
Population : 800
Water System : Yes
Community Bank : No
Electricity : No
Health Center : No- closest in Cope
Community Health Workers : Yes, non-GB
Homes with sanitation service : 100%
Education : Up to 6th grade
Closest GB lodging facility : La Iguana


Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete


Even though Panama is considered a country with a lot of economic growth, this growth doesn’t necessarily apply to all Panamanians, especially those in the rural areas. This results in large inequality when it comes to healthcare attention. As a consequence, access to health and dental care is one of the largest challenges for our partner communities. Hospitals and clinics are scarce in the rural areas where we work, and those that are accessible often lack proper staff, equipment, and medication.

The most prevalent illnesses in Santa Marta are fevers, common colds, diarrhea, hypertension, and diabetes.



The community of Santa Marta does not yet have Community Health Workers trained by Global Brigades. Global Brigades Panama Medical Program is working diligently to train volunteers as CHWs in its partner communities as part of the Holistic Model. Santa Marta will receive training as soon as possible to further support the health of its community members.

Some of the future CHW’s primary responsibilities will include:

  • Promoting healthy practices and maintaining contact with GB staff about their progress
  • Performing First Aid in the case of an emergency
  • Managing the Patient Referral cases of the community
  • Promoting involvement with other GB programs such as Human Rights, Public Health and Microfinance workshops
  • Recording and monitoring members of their respective communities who:
    • Are pregnant
    • Have a chronic disease
    • Are children under five
      years old


Chapter Date Number of Volunteers Chapter Date Number of Volunteers


Program Status

  • Planning
  • Active
  • Complete


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 a dentist within a reasonable distance.


Chapter Date Number of Volunteers Chapter Date Number of Volunteers

Local Reference Points

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

  • Feature