The Stan and Jan Berenstain Healthy Kids Foundation is a non-profit organization that is tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Section 501(c)(3). Contributions to it are tax deductible.
A Partnership of the Heart
The Stan & Jan Berenstain Healthy Kid Foundation’s newest partnership is with the Heart to Heart Foundation. This partnership came about, in part, through the efforts of Mike Berenstain’s wife, Dr. Laura K. Diaz. Laura is a pediatric cardiac anesthesiologist. She was part of a team of medical personnel which was organized by Heart to Heart to travel to Tomsk in Siberia to train Russian pediatric cardiac teams in surgical techniques. Heart to Heart is expanding their program to Peru and asked the Berenstain Foundation to provide support and funding for this effort. Detailed info about their Russian program is available on their website .In May 2015, Heart to Heart Founder & Medical Director, Dr. Nilas Young, and Executive Director, Josie Everett, traveled to Lima to discuss our program model with Peru’s cardiac leaders. The demand for heart surgery in Peru today greatly exceeds capacity. At the present time, open heart surgery is available on a very limited basis, and only in the capital city of Lima, home to around one-third of the nation’s population. This means that less than 33% of the children and adults in Peru have access to life-saving cardiac care.CHD occurs in roughly 1% of all births worldwide: each year in Peru 6,000 children are born with heart disease, the vast majority of whom will join a waiting list for life-saving surgery. And an estimated 300,000 adults in Peru have valvular heart disease: the vast majority of them must also wait.During the site assessment trip, Heart to Heart held a week-long series of meetings to assess the viability of a multiyear collaboration whose goal would be to develop the capacity to treat underserved heart patients throughout the country of Peru. The series of meetings included site visits to three medical institutions and discussions with leaders from five different cardiac teams – each with varying capacity to treat patients with heart disease.After extensive meetings were held to exchange information, thought leaders envisioned and shared scenarios about how to structure a multiyear collaboration that would significantly impact the treatment of heart disease throughout the whole country. We are thrilled to have met such enthusiastic and dedicated cardiac specialists in Lima. We hope to include them in Heart to Heart’s network of colleagues in the near future. As always, we thank you for your support – we could not do this without you.