UMH project helps strengthen health system in Ecuador

“Interventions to Strengthen the Resilience of Organizations and Professionals from the Public Health System in Ecuador” is the research project title at the Miguel Hernández University of Elche (UMH) that strives to strengthen, via proven interventions, the resilience of organizations and professionals from the public health system of Ecuador to prepare for and respond to health emergencies such as that caused by Covid-19.

Ecuador has been hit particularly hard by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. By May 31, 2021, that country had reported 426,000 cases (10% of the health professionals) with 20,572 deaths. Procedures, care organization and priorities have been altered, including patient safety. These working conditions have affected health personnel with psychological alterations, such as fatigue, post-traumatic stress, and moral harm. Given this reality, this research aims to contribute with tangible improvements under the conditions in which health care is provided in response to the consequences deriving from the pandemic.

As of now, the research team has been able to complete 6 sessions with focus groups, and after analyzing the data obtained during those meetings, useful audiovisual material is being generated. These interventions are based on previous resources that have been executed successfully during the pandemic at Spanish health centers, whose objective is to transfer them into practice at centers in Ecuador, and adapting their development to local requirements.

On behalf of the UMH, the project is being coordinated by professor María Asunción Vicente Ripoll. Assisting her are professors and researchers, César Fernández Peris, Julián Vitaller Burillo, José Joaquín Mira Solves, Irene Carrillo Murcia, and Eva Gil Hernández (FISABIO). Their Ecuadorian counterparts include Wilson Ricardo Cañizares Fuentes, from the Catholic University of Santiago de Guayaquil; and Jimmy Martín-Delgado, from IESS General Hospital Los Ceibos de Guayaquil.

This project contributes by advancing Sustainable Development Goal 3, “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.” It was one of the projects selected in a call for international research projects to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals from the Agenda 2030 of the UN that was announced by the Vice Rectorate for International Relations at the UMH and funded by the Generalitat Valenciana (Conv. GVA-UMH Solcif. 2020/0005).


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