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How Your Love Has Healed

Mid-Fiscal Year 2020-2021 Update

From Sarah Iracane, Chief Program Officer

2020 stretched our team’s creativity, resourcefulness and persistence in ways beyond imagination. As we look back on the year, we celebrate all that we were able to achieve even amongst the most difficult of circumstances.

We harnessed the ingenuity and commitment of medical volunteers and the miracles of technology to carry forward our mission in new ways.
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For José, the trip from Guatemala to Philadelphia, PA wasn't just an opportunity for scoliosis surgery but it also meant living out parts of his favorite movie, Rocky! A huge thanks to OrthoPediatrics for sponsoring José's care.
  • Implemented virtual scanning and 3D printing technology for children in Antigua in need of scoliosis braces. Fitting these children for high-quality braces in a timely manner is critical to preventing their curvatures’ progression, and can sometimes prevent the need for costly surgery.
  • Successfully completed our first virtual echocardiogram evaluation on a newborn baby in St. Vincent and have since begun developing a larger regional program to train local health workers in conducting echocardiograms that can be read virtually by WPP’s network of US cardiologists, thus reducing time delays in diagnosing newborns with critical heart defects.
  • Conducted two additional regional workshops virtually, bringing together ~100 frontline neonatal care doctors and nurses from 7 Caribbean countries and our US-based neonatology experts to discuss important clinical topics in the effort to reduce infant mortality across the region.
We utilized the depth of our international hospital network to continue to serve children with time-sensitive surgical conditions at a time when other programs were put on hold.
  • Deepening partnerships in Martinique and the Cayman Islands have resulted in life-saving cardiac care for ~10 children so far this fiscal year, and paved the way for many more children to receive care at these centers in 2021.
  • Children in need of prosthetics have been connected to new resources in their home countries of Guatemala and Honduras through WPP’s NGO partnerships, ensuring the pandemic does not delay this invaluable component of their care.
  • In Honduras, four children received life-saving cardiac surgery through WPP sponsorships and we increased our support of partner neuro and cardiac surgeons by filling supply gaps created by Covid-19. These vital supplies will help our committed colleagues continue to help children with critical needs in a timely manner.
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World Pediatric Project was able to connect Jahiem to care locally in Belize for treatment of his painful and debilitating kidney stones. While the surgery was quick, our WPP Belize office spent weeks working to obtain the necessary labs and imaging needed to determine a correct diagnosis and treatment plan. And the ability to obtain the surgery at a reduced cost including the donation of services by key local physicians comes from our WPP Belize staff’s continued efforts over the years to forge strong and trusting relationships which are paramount to our ability to efficiently and effectively assist more children within their own region.
We stayed connected to the patients and families who need us.

The WPP network of staff and partners across thousands of miles along with the ingenuity of our patient information system, allowed our team to stay connected to patients, even when we could not be with them in physically. We carefully monitored hundreds of children from afar this year and connected them with their WPP specialists throughout the year as needed for virtual consults and remote evaluations. We know these children will be waiting for us in 2021 and our teams are eager to return to the work they love in our treasured partner countries.
And perhaps most importantly, we upheld our commitment to provide care for those most in need, despite all the seemingly insurmountable challenges we faced in doing so.

Since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, more than 500 medical services have been provided to 17 children at hospitals across the United States. The complexities of coordinating international medical care during Covid-19 are daunting. But through the steadfast resolve and hard work of the WPP team, and the incredible support from so many donors and partners, these 17 children will now be able to look back on 2020 as a year of hope and healing.

As we look ahead to 2021, we hope to take with us the lessons learned this year– those of connectedness, creativity and persistence. Thank you for your past and continued support of WPP and the families we serve.

Read more about how your love has healed