Heartbeat International (HBI) was born out of compassion and generosity. In the early 1980’s a Guatemalan physician, Dr. Federico Alfaro, watched helplessly as his young patient died for want of a pacemaker. The family couldn’t afford to pay for their child’s treatment.
Dr. Alfaro swore that would never happen again under his watch – and we at HBI have kept that promise alive for generations of patients around the world. We build international networks of physicians and industry to provide free pacemakers to those most in need.
Read these Heartbeat International’s success stories from around the world.
Luz from the Philippines is only 27 years old and suffered from complete heart block. She was in critical need of pacemaker but couldn’t afford to get one on her own. Her life was in great danger.
With the our help she received a pacemaker and is now living a healthy life. Luz has more energy and is very happy and lives her life to the fullest now.
Aldrich was only 16 and when he was diagnosed with complete heart block. As a young child in the Philippines, he still has a whole lifetime ahead of him and has many dreams yet to fill. Unfortunately, his family was not able to afford to pay for a pacemaker for him. They needed help.
Heartbeat International was able to provide the pacemaker, the implant surgery and the follow up treatment for Aldrich. Aldrich is now able to purse his goals, find his future and have fun with his friends. His family is very grateful for the life changing, and saving device, provided through the Heartbeat International program.
Arturo’s heart problems began when he was three years-old. His father worked long hours at a taco stand in Mexico to support the family, but he felt scared and helpless. “I didn’t have the money for that surgery. I couldn’t save my own son’s life.”
His mother was equally devastated. “When my son was sleeping, sometimes I couldn’t hear his heart, and I knew one day he might not wake up in the morning.”
Arturo’s family found hope when they met Dr. Ricardo Meneses of Heartbeat International. Arturo traveled 100 miles to a hospital and was rushed into surgery for a pacemaker implant.
Today, Arturo runs around and plays with his friends. The experience has had a positive impact – he’s back at school and hopes to become a doctor someday.
Heartbeat International Foundation (HBI) is the only global charity providing free access to pacemaker therapy for disadvantaged women, children and men. Heart rhythm disorders are complex and the devices to treat them are expensive, especially in the developing world.
We save the patients and families we support from catastrophic healthcare bills, severely declining poverty, and mortal danger. Without us, they would have to sell all of their belongings and commit their families to indentured servitude, or face years of debilitating health and death.
We depend on medical device companies to provide us with donated pacemakers from their surplus inventory. Our patients get the treatment they need, and we prevent them from having to sell their belongings and indenture their families with years of debt.
Heartbeat International recruits cardiologists and other specialized physicians, as well as nurses and volunteers. We coordinate their activities to evaluate our patients, perform pacemaker implantation procedures, and make sure everything is okay during the follow up period.
Heart Centers are located in public hospitals that donate the space in their facilities for the procedure to take place. They also encourage their staff to donate time to help take care of our patients. Our local partnerships are friendly as well as formalized to ensure safe and competent care.
After treatment, our patients live full, productive lives. Children play and grow, and parents continue to care for their families. We’re the only charity of our kind and we need your support. Together, we can be their lifeline. Learn more about Heartbeat International here.
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