How Honduras’ Healthcare System Disproportionately Impacts Girls
Honduras’ healthcare system is a work in progress. Though medical professionals take measures to prevent outbreaks and work to heal people in need of medical care, there are still many ways in which the healthcare needs of Hondurans are not being met.
There are a lot of gaps present in Honduras’ healthcare system, particularly when it comes to how people of different genders are treated by healthcare professionals. As such, there is a serious gender inequality issue within Honduras’ healthcare system.
On top of gender inequality, poverty plays a major role in the outcome of patients. Those with less money are not treated to the same extent as people who are wealthier. The amount of money in your bank account, unfortunately, may correlate to the care you receive.
Today, we would like to discuss how Honduras’ healthcare system disproportionately impacts girls. We’ll start by pointing out the gaps in care and what gender inequality looks like within the healthcare sector in Honduras.
From there, we’ll talk about how poverty impacts health outcomes and what Our Little Roses is doing to improve healthcare for impoverished children. Let’s begin!
Gaps in Honduras’ Healthcare System
Did you know that only 1 out of every 10 people in Honduras has access to health insurance? That means 9 out of every 10 people aren’t covered by any form of healthcare insurance in Honduras, equating to 90% of the population. Insurance aside, just under 20% of Honduras residents cannot access healthcare services in general, meaning they go without medical care even when they need it most.
This comes down to the fact that healthcare services and providers are few and far between in Honduras. In turn, the inadequate number of providers leads to serious gaps in the Honduran healthcare system.
In addition to gender inequality and poverty, numerous other factors affect the Honduran healthcare system and create further gaps in the system. Some of these additional factors include:
- Racial discrimination
- Socio-economic prejudice
- Disproportionate care
Gender Inequality in the Honduran Healthcare System
Among the many gaps in Honduras’ healthcare system, a major issue in Honduras is gender inequality. Although gender inequality exceeds the healthcare system in Honduras, we are going to focus on how the Honduran healthcare system treats men and women differently.
A new health model was proposed in Honduras back in 2017 with the goal of improving coverage, employment opportunities, and the overall structure of the healthcare system in Honduras. However, despite the proposed model, the Honduran healthcare system still reflects serious gender inequality practices.
For example, one of the most pressing matters involving gender inequality within the Honduran healthcare sector is the fact that maternal mortality still remains very prominent. Pregnancy at a young age is also a reality for many women in Honduras; while getting pregnant earlier on in life isn’t exactly a problem on its own, it leads to numerous complications.
With inadequate healthcare and a lack of pregnancy appointments with a professional, women in Honduras come face-to-face with pregnancy-related complications that often result in the death of the pregnant woman. This is because women already don’t have the same access to healthcare as men in Honduras.
How Poverty Impacts Health Outcomes
On a similar note, poverty is a contributing issue to gender inequality in the Honduran healthcare system. It also contributes to the overall disproportionate care that women receive from Honduran healthcare professionals.
You might be wondering how money relates to gender inequality, but it all comes down to the way money plays the role of a status symbol. People who have more money are treated better than those who are viewed as poor.
With a lot of women being stay-at-home mothers instead of having jobs like their male counterparts, women are often assumed to be poor or less wealthy than men. Similarly, the way that women start having children young plays into the poverty issues and how that affects healthcare for them in Honduras.
Children are very expensive additions to anyone’s life, and more children means more expenses. As such, the more children women have, the higher their financial responsibilities become, and the less money they have to devote to healthcare-related needs.
How OLR is Working to Improve Healthcare for Impoverished Children
At Our Little Roses, our mission revolves around the overall betterment of Honduran girls’ lives. From educational opportunities and housing, to food assistance and ensuring adequate water access, Our Little Roses strives to pave the way to a better life for girls living in poverty.
We take girls under our wings and raise them until they are able to soar off into the world on their own. While education is one of our main focuses, we also incorporate a sense of female empowerment into all that we do. We teach our girls how to advocate for themselves.
Advocating for yourself as a girl in Honduras means pursuing medical care and standing in their power when healthcare professionals try to disadvantage them. By teaching our girls that they are equal to men and deserve fair treatment, we are raising young girls to believe in a better tomorrow.
We connect girls with healthcare services and providers who believe that women deserve to be treated fairly in the healthcare sector, too. By networking with local Honduran healthcare system providers, we seek out healthcare for the girls at OLR so they can learn how to care for themselves and find care when they get older, too. Our medical clinic, staffed by Dr. Tony, and a registered nurse, is instrumental in helping our girls to understand the importance of preventative healthcare, eating healthy, exercising, and getting regular gynecological exams.
Dr. Tony also works closely every year (pre-covid) with a medical mission group. The healthcare professionals in this team are led by a female pediatrician. The women and children from the surrounding area who have no access to simple health care are given a simple examination with blood pressure, weight, and temperature checks. The doctor examines the children and administers life-saving medicine to treat the very common parasite infections caused by drinking water that is not potable, or skin rashes that are very common. While a simple examination, the women all leave with less anxiety knowing their children have had an examination. We hope our medical mission will resume in 2022!
How You Can Support the Efforts of Our Little Roses
Would you like to support the mission of Our Little Roses and contribute to the improvement of healthcare for impoverished children? First of all, we thank you kindly for your generosity and your selflessness. We are able to do what we do because of people like you and your contributions are thoroughly appreciated.
We offer two options in terms of supporting OLR! You can either become a sponsor or sign up to donate to our organization. As always, select the option that suits you and your circumstances best. Thank you for helping OLR improve healthcare for impoverished girls in Honduras!