Equity Health Ledes

Used Nebulizers Diverted from Discard Are Saving Lives of Children in Need

Photo credit: Global Links

Imagine walking for miles carrying your baby and watching as she gasps for breath in the throes of an asthma attack.  Imagine arriving at your community clinic, only to find that there is a line of children and adults ahead of you, all waiting for breathing treatment via a shared nebulizer.  That scenario is very real in rural and remote areas of Central and South America, and the Caribbean.

globallinks_mother-giving-nebulizer

Child receiving nebulizing treatment, Dominican Republic. Photo Credit: Annie O’Neill

To address that need, Global Links, a Pittsburgh-based international medical relief agency, has launched Breathe Hope, the first national campaign to collect used nebulizers (breathing machines) for donation to asthma sufferers – particularly children –  in Central and South America, and the Caribbean, as well as to charity organizations serving uninsured/underinsured children and seniors in the United States.

Until now, parents and families in the U.S. whose children and loved ones have graduated to using an inhaler and/or who no longer require breathing treatments have had few choices other than discarding or indefinitely storing their nebulizer as U.S. medical and manufacturer regulations do not allow the machines to be returned.  The Breathe Hope campaign makes it possible for these simple, still useable, life-saving devices to be shared.

Nebulizers are used to treat asthma, a chronic disease that the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates currently affects 334 million people worldwide. Asthma is the most common chronic disease among children, and most asthma-related deaths occur in communities where access to breathing treatments and emergency medical care is limited.

For information on donating a nebulizer, go to www.globallinks.org/breathe_hope.php

About Global Links

Global Links is a medical relief and development organization dedicated to improving health in resource-poor communities while reducing medical waste. By recovering high-quality surplus medical supplies and equipment from U.S. hospitals and distributing them to public healthcare institutions, primarily in Latin America and the Caribbean, Global Links provides a socially and environmentally beneficial alternative to sending tons of still-useful materials to landfills. Since 1989, Global Links has delivered over $190 million in critical medical aid through our collaborative, capacity building programs.  In addition Global Links’ unique Suture Donation Program recovers life-saving sutures to help patients worldwide. For more information, visit www.globallinks.org.

 

Contact: 

Kathleen Hower, Executive Director, Co-Founder

Main Global Links Phone Number: (412) 361-3424