National Maternity Hospital in El Salvador Receives Makeover of Oncology Ward

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Basic Health International joined forces with RoomsThatRock4Chemo to redesign and upgrade the chemotherapy unit of El Salvador’s National Maternity Hospital “Dr. Raúl Arguello Escolán”.

Before and after image of the communal chemotherapy treatment room in the oncology ward.

We (Basic Health International) are blessed to be part of this project to benefit patients that receive treatment in this oncology ward at the Maternity Hospital

San Salvador, August 31 2012. Representatives of the organization Basic Health International (BHI) announced the renovations of the Oncology ward at El Salvador’s National Maternity Hospital “Dr. Raúl Arguello Escolán”.

The inauguration was attended by the Minister of Health of El Salvador, Dr. María Isabel Rodríguez, Director of the Maternity Hospital, Dr. Roberto Sánchez Ochoa, Medical Director of Basic Health International, Dr. Mauricio Maza, and Rooms that Rock for Chemo representative, Regina Cabrero.

The renovation was made possible by the organizations Basic Health International and RoomsThatRock4Chemo (RTR4C) at a cost of more than $50,000 USD. Over forty volunteers participated in the project, including doctors, interior designers and students. The work was made possible with the collaboration of The Poma Foundation (Fundación Poma), SYKES El Salvador, Cerámicas del Pacifico, OLINS and TACA Airlines.

"These types of collaborations are the ones closest to our heart, the ones that make a difference for people who are struggling to survive cancer. We should never forget to give back to our community, we are proud that SYKES El Salvador starts this collaboration with Basic Health International and we expect to partner up again in future projects," remarked Edgardo Gonzalez, Human Resources Manager of SYKES El Salvador.

“We are blessed to be part of this project to benefit patients that receive treatment in this oncology ward at the Maternity Hospital. Basic Health International united forces with RoomsThatRock4Chemo, a non-profit organization from the United States that is dedicated to improve chemotherapy rooms for patients suffering from cancer, so they can be in an environment filled with serenity during their treatment. We want to thank all the local supporters from many foundations and private businesses for their donation to help remodel the oncology ward,” said Mauricio Maza, Medical Director of Basic Health International.

The chemotherapy unit has four rooms containing 15 beds for patients that are hospitalized, 10 chairs for women to receive out-patient chemotherapy, a nurse’s station, and a room for patient consultations and other outpatient procedures.

The three primary cancers treated at the National Maternity Hospital include breast, ovarian and cervical cancer. They admit approximately 1,300 patients annually to provide services including surgical oncology, diagnostic studies, and chemotherapy. The oncology and chemotherapy units also perform an average of 500 surgeries per year and see an average of 2,100 patients annually on an outpatient basis.

Basic Health International (BHI) was founded by Dr. Miriam Cremer in 2005 with a vision to create a center of excellence for cervical cancer research and prevention. BHI utilizes its expertise in women’s health to provide clinical training, research and public policy guidance in the field of cervical cancer screening and treatment, particularly for women in low-resource settings. BHI offices are located in New York City and San Salvador, El Salvador.

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Lauren Ditzian
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