Hands of Esperanza Clinic Fund

Providing for underserved communities in developing countries is vital to reducing health disparities and improving population health.  Grantee Daniel Hendricks, PA-C, and Hands of Esperanza used funding to support continued construction on a permanent, multidisciplinary clinic.

“Hands of Esperanza officially formed in 2019 after a group of dedicated PAs wanted to better serve the communities in the Alta Verapaz region of Guatemala,” said Hendricks.  “What began in 2014 as a desire to participate in an annual mission trip with fellow PAs, PA students, and other clinicians has transformed into establishing a multispecialty clinic to provide sustainable access to health care for this community.”

Despite setbacks and hardships that have challenged the project in a pandemic and post-pandemic world, the Hands of Esperanza team has been resolved in their efforts.

The team completed its annual medical mission in August 2022 and was joined by approximately 30 PA students from NSU Orlando’s PA program.

PAs and PA students provided physical exams, administered diagnostic tests, and provided needed medications. The most common ailments were bacterial and parasitic infections, pain relief, and gynecologic ailments.

When complete, the new clinic will partner with local organizations, including AVIS/Living to Serve, to provide part of the clinic’s staff.  The clinic will focus on primary and gynecological care as well as provide a surgical suite that will offer general surgery services.  Hands of Esperanza’s goal is to serve 5,000 patients annually in the clinic.

The clinic’s infrastructure will also foster continuity of care, provide space for patient education, support implementation of public health strategies, and provide a base for additional volunteer groups to make an impact in the region.

While construction continues, Hands of Esperanza is committed to returning annually with an expanded medical mission trip to care for this community.

The Health Foundation is glad to support this PA-led nonprofit and its inspiring efforts to improve health for an underserved population.

This project was supported by the Kathy J. Pedersen Grant to Promote Equitable Care.

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