DB Peru’s mission is to partner with local communities to provide access to healthcare knowledge and delivery, and improve living conditions for the people of Peru. The work of DB Peru is based in the Lower Napo River of the Peruvian Amazon jungle – an area sometimes known as the forgotten place – working with remote indigenous communities who have limited access to health care.
DB Peru was founded in 2003 to provide healthcare, outreach and health education to remote communities of the Lower Napo River in the Loreto Department of Peru. DB Peru was founded in response to community requests for assistance to bridge the chasm between health needs and access to health care in this region. DB Peru has run successful health education programs in the areas of perinatal care, midwife classes, community health worker classes, women’s health, breast and cervical cancer screening, infectious diseases and tuberculosis, and dental health at a minimum of four times per year since its inception. Their continual presence has been essential because healthcare access is one of the major problems for the people who live in the Amazon River basin.
Achievements of DB Peru
At present, DB Peru is in its 14th year and serves over 5000 people in 25 villages. All of their work is done by volunteers, coordinated into six to eight focused health outreach trips annually. They work closely with the Ministry of Health and the local municipalities to augment their established programs.
DB Peru has run over 200 outreach health clinics in 25 villages over the last 14 years.
Through our programs we have linked the community to approximately 500 expert medical volunteers from around the world.
During the last six years DB Peru has screened over 500 women in 20 villages for breast and cervical cancer with follow-up and treatment; the first time this service was ever available to them.
Midwife classes are offered each year taught by professional staff from local clinics. Using research-based data, we are able to make improvements in practice and care. For example, the leading cause of morbidity for children in Loreto is anaemia, which can be linked back to time of birth. Evidence for early cord clamping at delivery was discussed with local midwives and resulted in widespread change of practice for 100% of midwives involved.
Because of our continuing presence in this area, the follow up with patients of concern or those with chronic diseases has been one of our most important initiatives. Patients who are not improving, or need advocates to help negotiate the healthcare system, are either transported to a higher level of care, or assisted with transportation, medicines, or referrals.