2023 Project Story: Guatemala Xela

Although Guatemala’s government has made improvements to health services and systems, rural populations still struggle to access basic aid. In 2018, the probability of death for children under five years old was 26 out of 1000—10 times more likely than that of the United States. This disparity is even greater among indigenous rural communities with families of Mayan descent.

The World Bank estimates that basic health and nutrition services meet only 54 percent of the needs of the rural population.  The vast difference in health care access can be tracked by following the rate of births with a skilled attendant: 70.2 percent of urban non-indigenous families and only 29.1 percent of rural indigenous families. This is typically due to lack of access to a health facility. 

The community of La Cumbre houses a diabetes clinic that provides free health care for diabetic patients in the area. Currently, this clinic runs out of rented rooms within the community. These rooms are small and the clinic is unable to remodel, which makes it difficult to provide quality care to these patients. 

In 2023, HXP Builders will construct a large, permanent building that the clinic can call its own. The clinic will provide free healthcare to patients from the surrounding villages, and anticipates providing care for about 2,000 patients per year.

Source: USAID, CDC, World Bank 2013