No, this isn’t another fish story, nor is it about some rich American buying up the lagoon so he can fish all day in his retirement. No, this is a brief story about Bill Amason and his team of doctors and volunteers, who come to Belize several times a year and provide medical services to Belizeans who cannot afford and, in many instances, do not have access to medical assistance. The name of the organization is called “Belize Missions”, and their mission is clear. They want to help those less fortunate. Bill explained how this got started fifteen years ago when he would come to Belize and film a program called, “Adventure Fisherman,” along with his co-host Bushman Jack. As he would bring some doctors along to fish the beautiful waters of Belize, they became aware of some of the unfortunate conditions facing many Belizeans, especially those in the remote villages on the mainland, where in many places, medical help is unavailable.
This year, they decided to come to San Pedro to assist those who need medical services. Bill says that the local doctors view them as a threat to business, but Bill sees it differently. He sees he and his team as strumming up business for the local doctors by diagnosing the patient and then referring that patient to his or her local doctor. According to Bill, the Belize Mission team does not come to Belize to disrupt anything. They just want to lend a helping hand. Their two and a half day clinic was held in the conference room of the San Pedro Town Council Building. They accepted the room given to them to use, and it should not be seen as anything political, especially from the side of Belize Missions, according to Amason.
The Belize Medical Council approves Belize Missions and its provision of medical services. Those services included testing for diabetes and high blood pressure. They give out vitamins, worm pills, medication for pain and fever, and also provide dental care, although this time, they were not assisted by dentists. Belize Mission comes to Belize six to eight trips a year and brings over three hundred doctors and volunteers.
Bill explained that Belize Missions, for the first time, will begin keeping health records for individual patients, whereas before, they only kept statistics. This process will give doctors a closer look at the patient, allowing a different doctor or doctors to examine the patient’s file in order to better manage the patient’s treatment. Bill also explained that he and his organization are willing to stock the new Poly Clinic in San Pedro with medication, and he assured that he would come to Belize three or four times a year and bring the medications, the only catch being that the medicines are given to those who need it the most. Dr. Giovanni Solorzano, the man in charge at the Poly Clinic, said that he supports the efforts made by Belize Missions and welcomes their medical contributions. If you would like to find out more about Belize Missions, you can visit their web site at www.belizemissions.com
However, all of this philanthropy would not be possible if efforts in Belize were not in place. Michael Myvett makes all of the effort from the Belizean side of things. He and his team of Belizeans coordinate everything that takes place in Belize with Belize Missions. Mike arranges everything from hotel accommodations, to transportation, to taking care of obtaining all the permits. Hats off to Mike and his team!
If you missed out on the medical services provided by the Belize Mission on this trip, don’t fret, they will be back again in June.
The Belize Mission, its co-founder and spokesman, Bill Amason, have clearly stated the mission of the Belize Mission, and that is to do good for those less fortunate, a lesson from which we could all learn.