In Uzbekistan, scarce resources from an economy that remains heavily dependent on one agricultural commodity, cotton, limit access to basic health care for the country's 29 million citizens. Major gaps exist in preventive and primary health care. Critical health issues:
- High rates of respiratory diseases, such as pneumonia and bronchitis
Working with a local NGO, AmeriCares supports a broad range of health care institutions throughout Uzbekistan. Aid provided by AmeriCares reaches patients in hospitals, mother-child clinics, rehabilitation centers and orphanages, in addition to sponsorship of community-specific public health initiatives. Support for a “health train” helps bring medical care to some of the most isolated communities
Each month, AmeriCares has the opportunity to send aid into Tashkent for free through a program generously provided by an agreement with Uzbekistan Airlines and the Uzbekistan Mission to the United Nations.
Since 1997, we have delivered more than $220 million worth of medicines and medical aid, working partnership with the Soglum Avlod Uchun Foundation. This local group whose name translates as “For a Healthy Generation” works in partnership with AmeriCares to increase access to medicine throughout the country.
The Foundation operates two primary care and 15 mobile clinics throughout the country, reaching 13,000 small towns and villages. AmeriCares donations equip doctors with necessary treatments and tools that are otherwise not available due to cost and other limitations. As part of the outreach, AmeriCares supports a Health Train filled with medicines and medical supplies that reached some of the country’s most isolated communities around the shrinking Aral Sea.
During a recent trip to the Health Train, the medical team traveled for 5 days, covering more than half of the country, and saw about 300 patients a day. The Health Train carried products valued at $26 million, with the majority of the products being from AmeriCares. The Health Train was also the first to distribute donations of TOMS shoes in Uzbekistan through the AmeriCares partnership with TOMS. Due to its success, our in-country partner, Solgon Avlod Uchun, plans on sending two more Health Trains in 2012.
In June 2010, civil conflict between Kyrgyzes and minority Uzbeks broke out in Southern Kyrgyzstan in its second largest city, Osh. Many died due to in the extreme violence motivated by ethnic tensions. Approximately 80,000 people, predominately Uzbeks, fled across the border to seek refuge in Uzbekistan. AmeriCares teamed up with the U.S State Department and international relief partners to coordinate a response to provide $3 million in emergency aid to both the victims and refugees in Uzbekistan.
Uzbekistan faces significant challenges around heart disease and hypertension, which contributes to more than half of all deaths in the country. In 2007 AmeriCares established the Central Asian Cardiovascular Initiative. This program promoted treatment for the most prevalent forms of heart disease, including high cholesterol and hypertension. The program actively tracked patient progress and taught individuals how to manage their own conditions. According to a local initiative coordinator, the Central Asian Cardiovascular Initiative has played a significant role in decreasing hospital in-patient and emergency department visits throughout the duration of the project. In addition, the initiative has proven to enhance the overall quality of the patients’ lives who, with their physical and emotional health restored, now demonstrate and express a greater interest in life and work. Read More »
In 2012, AmeriCares partnered with TOMS shoes to deliver the first-ever container with over 33,000 pairs of donated shoes to Uzbekistan. The first container arrived in April and the distribution started in May. Recently, AmeriCares deployed staff members to Uzbekistan to witness the distribution process that is occurring through the Health Train. Most of the shoes are being distributed through orphanages and boarding schools to help prevent children from contracting skin infections or illnesses such as the flu or bronchitis due to the cold and damp weather in Uzbekistan. TOMS shoes has committed to replenish the donated shoes ever 6 months, with a new shipment scheduled for AmeriCares to facilitate by the end of the year. Read More »
AmeriCares also donates medical products to qualified U.S. health care professionals who are traveling to Uzbekistan to provide charitable medical care. Through this program, donated medicines and medical supplies reach impoverished and isolated communities where even basic medical care is inaccessible to the poor or often non-existent. AmeriCares donations cure infections, relieve pain, help patients manage chronic diseases and make life-changing surgeries possible. Since 2000, products valued at over $274,000 were donated to the Medical Outreach Program in Uzbekistan.
Recent News from Uzbekistan
On World Heart Day and everyday, AmeriCares works to provide lifesaving medicines, supplies, and education to help save lives and improve health outcomes for people suffering from cardiovascular disease.
Since 2010, AmeriCares has worked with TOMS to deliver new shoes to impoverished children in Guatemala and other countries around the world — including Uzbekistan, the Philippines, Armenia, and El Salvador.
AmeriCares ensures that its aid is put into the hands of people who need it most. We uphold this standard by remaining transparent and efficient in the delivery process from start to finish -- from receiving donations to building targeted shipments to delivering aid and monitoring in-country distribution.
AmeriCares has donated $135 million in cardiovascular medications to Uzbekistan in the past five years, allowing hundreds of patients to reclaim their lives and move forward with a healthier future.
AmeriCares delivered emergency aid to help to victims of brutal ethnic violence in Kyrgyzstan where thousands of men, women and children remain homeless and are living in refugee camps. Read more.
AmeriCares is sending emergency aid to help to victims of brutal ethnic violence in Kyrgyzstan. Over 800 people, mainly minority Uzbeks, have been hospitalized for gun-shot wounds, burnings and other violent attacks.
AmeriCares honors Heart Month and delivered $170 million worth of lifesaving heart medicines and medical supplies to help stem this worldwide heart disease health crisis last year. In recognition of Heart Month, AmeriCares is sharing heart patient success stories from around the world.
AmeriCares is responding to the global food crisis by delivering nutritional supplements, vitamins and medicines to help those in vulnerable communities around the world.
Recently, AmeriCares Program Managers Jim O'Brien and Kathleen Oldaker visited our partners in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. While there, they recognized an ongoing need for basic health care in the region.