A grassroots effort to provide hurricane relief in 2000 has grown to a national health network supply chain, largely supported by Dominican Republic businesses. While this process happened organically, it would not have happened without the dedicated efforts of CitiHope Vice President of the Caribbean and Latin America Tim Tuccelli, and his family. Their dedicated work helped birth a strategic alliance: a private-public partnership called Sanar una Nación® (in English, "Heal a Nation").
While the Dominican Ministry of Public Health strives to safeguard the health of its population and ensure access to essential medicines, it cannot meet the minimum demand. Sanar una Nación® is a vital program helping to close that gap with donations from valuable US pharmaceutical partners.
Food security also remains a concern across the nation, with 10 percent of the total Dominican population undernourished and, within rural areas, almost one-fifth of children under five are malnourished due to poor diet. For children in Dominican Republic’s poorest communities, the risk of malnutrition begins before birth. Thirty percent of Dominican women of reproductive age are anemic, and public maternal hospitals report that over one-third of their pregnant patients show signs of malnutrition.
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Sanar Una Nación® - This public/private partnership was launched in 2012 pursuant to careful analysis with the Ministry of Public Health, military, police and evaluations with primary to tertiary health care institutions, and after in-depth interviews with top Dominican corporate leaders and physicians.
Sanar una Nación® unites this coalition and has proven its capacity to improve the health of the nation with a coordinated, rational, and transparent program to:
Strengthen weak areas in the health system;
Promote food security;
Provide critical medicines and medical supplies to credible health institutions.
The Sanar una Nación® platform was chosen by Dominican businesses to provide US $8 million to purchase 20% of the budget for the government’s purchase of COVID-19 vaccines in 2020 and 2021 and over US $3 million in funding to purchase diagnostic equipment, PCR and antigen reagents and personal protection equipment for front line healthcare workers and patients to mitigate the effects of the COVID pandemic.
In December 2021, Sanar una Nación® was recognized by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Dominican National Council of Private Enterprise (CONEP) as one of 17 initiatives nationwide demonstrating the highest level of governance, transparency, and impact toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
Food Relief - The Dominican Republic is a developing country with a countrywide infrastructure growing around pockets of acute poverty. Impoverished communities already at a disadvantage in access to health services face rising concerns over basic nutrition.
Dominican Republic is also one of the most vulnerable countries in the world to the effects of climate change, and particularly the economic and public health hazards associated with tropical storms and flooding. In recent years, the impact of natural disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic have increased vulnerable families’ risk of poverty and food insecurity.
CitiHope has executed several successful U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) IFRP programs from 2005 - present, and supplemental nutrition programs in partnership with Rise Against Hunger and Vitamin Angels.
Building upon the experience, relationships, and infrastructure developed by these programs enables us to provide life-saving nutrition to the most vulnerable in targeted recipient institutions. CitiHope-Dominicana works directly with beneficiary institutions and on average targets approximately 35,000 COVID-19 affected persons, orphans and vulnerable children, pregnant women and lactating mothers, people living with HIV and AIDS, hospital patients, persons affected by natural disasters, and the elderly, with a special focus on pregnant and lactating mothers, who have additional nutritional requirements often impossible to attain during periods of food insecurity.
Sanar una Nación, the corporate social responsibility alliance, is led by CitiHope Relief & Development and the following prominent Dominican corporations: Grupo Rica, Grupo Popular, Grupo Ramos, and Grupo Universal, and with publicity support from PagésBBDO.
USAID's Food for Peace International Food Relief Program
Rise Against Hunger
Good Shepherd India
In response to the COVID-19 health crisis bearing down on the Dominican Republic, the Sanar una Nación corporate alliance, led by prominent Dominican corporations and CitiHope Relief & Development, joined forces with the National Council of Private Enterprise, Inc. (CONEP) in the provision of US$4.8 million of urgently needed screening tests, protective gear, medical supplies, medicines and nutrition to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the population.
SNS Servicio Nacional de SAlud
Patronato Benefico Oriental PBO 3
Screening Tests and Medical Supplies Items purchased directly by our Dominican corporate sponsors for delivery through the Sanar una Nación alliance included 100,000 SARS-CoV-2 rapid combined IgM/IgG antibody test kits yielding 15-minute results and as follow-up testing the delivery of 10,000 units of PCR tests including five Real Time PCR Diagnostic machines, 100 Hazmat Rated face masks, 10,000 disposable protective clothing kits with N-95 masks for hospital and laboratory professionals, as well as 10 AEONMED VG70 ventilators. This COVID-19 specific aid was channeled through the Dominican Government’s high-level commissions for the Prevention and Control of Coronaviruses, which led the health crisis.
Medicines and Fortified Food Additionally, CitiHope staged through its Sanar una Nación alliance the distribution of US $3.2 million of medicines and Rise Against Hunger & USAID fortified food with the aim of mitigating the health emergency. Over 1.4 million servings of fortified food was distributed to help strengthen the immune system of those at risk for malnutrition; including senior citizens, pregnant women and children. Likewise, the medicines intended to treat chronic diseases and opportunistic infections benefitted more than 100,000 patients.
Sanar una Nación is the corporate social responsibility alliance led by CitiHope Relief & Development and prominent Dominican corporations: Grupo Rica, Grupo Popular, Grupo Ramos, and Grupo Universal, and with publicity support from PagésBBDO. The collaborating CONEP affiliated corporations include INICIA, CCN, Grupo Martí, CEPM and Humano.