Poor Children Pay with Their Health

With the nation’s attention focused on the future of healthcare in the US, we are reminded of the profound connection between poverty and health and that so many around the world still lack access to affordable healthcare.

Children from poor households are at consistently higher risk of being exposed to inadequate water and sanitation, crowding, and indoor pollution than children from wealthy families.

Unsurprisingly, children from poor households are less likely to receive vaccinations or to seek treatment.

Although 2/3 of nearly all deaths related to illness are preventable, Pro Mujer has found that clients are extremely reluctant to spend their scarce resources on healthcare for themselves, mostly doing so in emergencies only, when it is more costly and sometimes too late.

For this reason it is vital to educate about health care offer easily accessible health care services.

It is especially important for women and girls because they are even less likely to get treatment or vaccinations than men and boys.  The World Health Organization recently released a report calling for more investment in health services for women and girls.

The Mexican actress, director and producer Salma Hayek has teamed up with Pro Mujer to expand children’s health and maternal care services in Argentina, Bolivia, Mexico, Nicaragua and Peru.  Her donation will go to vaccinate children against polio, tuberculosis, and yellow fever, to perform healthy-child check ups to monitor growth, to detect childhood illnesses such as diarrhea and upper respiratory infections, to monitor prenatal health and to train mothers on hygiene, preventing malnutrition, and detecting early warning signs of diseases among their children.

For full story, see the German Foundation Ein Herz fuer Kinder website.