Professional healthcare does not exist in most of the communities where we work. Rainbow Network’s goal is to provide at least the basic medical services needed to relieve pain and suffering plus keep the population healthy and free of treatable diseases. We offer support to those with special medical needs that are beyond basic medical care, not only arranging for the care, but also all the costs associated with the special treatment and/or hospital needed to treat the ailment, surgery or rehabilitation.
Each year the Rainbow Network spends about $150,000 on medicine for the doctors to have on hand to treat their patients. Large quantities of vitamins and anti-parasite medicines are also donated by various organizations within the United States and abroad.
We purchase the medicines our doctors carry with them from local organizations at wholesale prices. Though they are at a discounted rate, the cost associated with each doctor’s needs is still rather high. Summer months are known as the rainy months in Nicaragua. During this 6 month period we see a rise in doctor visits with cases of treatable diseases requiring the simplest of meds. Our doctors carry these meds and dispense as they go.
Rainbow Network has 10 full-time physicians; all are Nicaraguans, as is all our staff in Nicaragua. Our doctors go to a different community each half day and provide medical consultations. Each of the communities know their schedule and volunteers are on hand to meet the arriving doctor, manage the people, dispense the medicine, and help keep the necessary records. Our doctors carry medicines with them and are dispensed immediately. The patients are charged a small fee depending on the economic condition of that community. Most pay 15 Cordoba’s or 75 cents for the doctor’s visit and the medicine that they need. Our doctors estimate they have provided more than 700,000 patient consultations since 1995. Much pain is relieved and many lives are saved routinely.