Scottish philanthropists are funding eight new children’s hospital operating rooms in Ecuador.
Former Miss Scotland Nicola Wood and her husband Gareth, son of Sir Ian Wood, set up the charity Kids OR to ensure safe surgery for children around the world.
The charity provides dedicated specialist facilities and equipment for children’s surgery in some of the world’s poorest places.
This week Nicola announced KidsOR’s plans to work with two key hospitals in Ecuador to positively impact the lives of up to 5,000 children a year by increasing access to safe surgery.
The first two facilities will be based in the Hospital des los Valles in Quito and will support the hospital’s new paediatric surgery training programme, allowing more children from the wider region to access surgery.
The additional six new operating facilities will be based in the Hospital del Nino Dr. Francisco De lcaza Bustamante in the city of Guayaquil. The children’s hospital, which is located in Ecuador’s largest city, will benefit from a refurbishment of its existing operating suite, allowing local surgeons to maximise the number of children receiving care and in the safest possible conditions.
Nicola Wood said: “Sadly, there are still almost two billion children around the world who lack access to safe surgery. The negative impact of this is felt not only by the child, but by their family, their community and their country.
“At KidsOR we strongly believe that no child should die or live their life in agonising pain or with a disability because of a surgically treatable condition and we’re committed to making a tangible difference to the lives of thousands of children.
“It’s an absolute honour to be in Ecuador, and to work with such incredibly inspiring hospitals and medical staff, tirelessly working to provide greater access to safe surgery.”
KidsOR works with local surgeons and their teams to design and build operating facilities to transform the care available to children in low and middle-income countries (LMICs).
KidsOR currently has surgical facilities in development stages in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, The Gambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Zambia, Mozambique, Nepal, and South East Asia.
Work will start on the development of Ecuadorian operating facilities in 2019 and is due to be completed by 2020.