I often hear Canadians complain about the health care system – wait times too long, etc. Imagine living in a country like the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where there is no free health care. Where you have to pay an up-front fee of US$ 10 to see a physician. If you can scrape the funds together from meager savings, or friends and family, you have to then also pay for your own prescriptions. Heaven forbid you get hospitalised, as that will be US$20 per day.
GDP Comparison Canada vs DRC
Then consider that in DRC, the average income is less than a dollar per day. To put it into perspective: Canada GDP per capita was USD $51,958 in 2010. DRC GDP per capita was USD $484 for the same period. That puts Canada at 107 times the income of DRC, or to put it differently, a doctor’s visit will cost USD $1,070, with hospital fees at USD $2,140 per day, paid for 100% by the user.
Malaria a Common Occurrence in DRC
Imagine then having to deal with diseases like Typhoid and Malaria that occur fairly frequently in the country. At the orphanage, on average, around 3 children per month are treated for Typhoid or Malaria, both mosquito borne diseases. Recently, Niya, an amazing young lady who volunteers her time to help at the orphanage, was infected with a severe bout of Malaria that landed her in hospital for almost two weeks.
She was close to death. The family (single Mom) did not have the funds to have her transferred to Bukavo hospital that has an intensive care unit, which she desperately needed. Through the generosity of a few kind people who donated USD $350, part of the medical bills has been paid. [Sadly, Niya passed away in early May from a very treatable disease].
We do not realise how good we have it in North America, compared to so many places around the world. Be thankful every morning that you wake up on Canadian soil.
Please help protect children in DRC from preventable diseases, donate here.