Knowledge Sharing for a Collective health

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Knowledge Sharing for a Collective health

Organization type: 
for profit
< $1,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

To promove an approach to health care that takes into account local cultural knowledge and practice, ritual experiences, and sharing community resources. Promoting knowledge sharing between medical teams (doctors, nurses, midwives, dentists, social workers, paramedics), local traditional healers, and the community; and thus ultimately a medical discipline with a more egalitarian approach.
In my

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

The knowledge and strategies of individuals, families and communities have been ignored as valid knowledge as part of a health communitarian model based on its own concepts like the transgression to ethical rules, the emergence of imbalances in the individual, family and community. On the other hand, health policies do not respect cultural diversity and health programs are mono-cultural and thus many times these are iatrogenic. This has generated a weakness in their cultural matrix, making people increasingly dependent and less autonomous and so much more culturally immune deficient. The contribution that ancient communitarian knowledge might imply to the development of a more inclusive and appropriate health model is not taken into account.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

In Chile, for decades the official health system has been developed in a vertical manner–centralized with no take in account the knowledge, practices and attitudes of the people point of view. The inhabitants of the Island of Chiloé (sometimes living in far away places with difficult access to biomedical health care) possess medical and cultural knowledge that is sustainable as a local strategy in a globalized, neoliberal world. It is crucial to both to strengthen and give credence to this knowledge to insure its survival over time. Usually ignored by public health care systems, these communities have had to develop their own ways to evaluate and resolve their health problems. The personal strategies and healing paths (or equilibrium recovery) that the native and non-native communities rely on are based on values of reciprocity, solidarity, absence of transgression, and respect for life. They also have unique concepts of personhood and their relationships with the spiritual and physical environment. Most importantly, the Chilean health system does not respect the cultural diversity, space, and time which has contributed to the systematic destruction of ancient practices, with the consequential domination of an authoritarian health model, centralized and dismissive, who’s policies have produced fear, dependency, loss of autonomy and a lifestyle of progressive reliance on medication—as seen in the inordinate use of pharmaceuticals as the only solution for most health problems.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

The fact of having influenced the health policy in the Chiloe province where the Health Service is the only in Chile that has a Collective Health Unit formed by people from different disciplines anthropology, psychology, kinesiology, occupational therapist, Mapuche and Williche cultural advisors (indigenous) communitarian advisory and a Network of traditional healers who live and work in their territories and are in contact with occidental therapists. The fact of having integrated health anthropology, socio cultural epidemiology, communitarian psychology, social planning, local culture awareness, action research and the Social Analysis System (SAS2) as a working method. This has impacted the households and families through domestic medicines, and by adjusting rural health units, communitarian and other high complexity hospitals to the population’s socio cultural reality. The fact of having developed a participative action research line evidenced in scientific magazine articles, 2 books: Nacer en Chiloé [Born in Chiloe] and Síndromes Culturales en el Archipiélago de Chiloé [Cultural Syndromes on Chiloé Island] and a series of documentary videos and photos about socio cultural reality. Acknowledgement by health institutions at provincial and national level for collective health model. Participation in territorial collective health groups in isolated rural and island locations that by participating in the model notice that their knowledge is being valued and thus they feel part of the proposal.
About You
Unidad Salud Colectiva- Servicio Salud Chiloe
Section 1: You
First Name

Jaime Ernesto

Last Name

Ibacache Burgos

Section 2: Your Organization
Organization Name

Unidad Salud Colectiva- Servicio Salud Chiloe

Organization Phone


Organization Address

calle Blanco Nº 324, Castro. Chiloe. Chile

Organization Country
Your idea
Country and state your work focuses on
Do you have a patent for this idea?


This schedule shows the different actions of the idea and how these relate.
1. Get to know and strengthen family and communitarian strategies
2. Development of a socio cultural epidemiology
3. Adjustment of health services to socio cultural realities
4. Articulate contributions from the different medical systems that coexist in the territory.
5. Learn about individual’s healing path
6. Strengthen the social collective group in the territory aimed at social control.


1. Families trained in self-care including articulating their own culture with occidental knowledge.
2. Learn about the causes and the determinant socio cultural profile of imbalances in the isolated territories of Chiloe Island. Health teams in those territories were trained in Collective Health and Socio Cultural epidemiology
3. Occidental health network (health post, clinics, facility health centers and hospitals) with models and spaces appropriate for their local culture.
4. Healers from different health models connected and working together in the healing processes.
5. Audiovisual record of “standard” Healing paths performed by people when seeking healing.
6. Territorial organizations empowered and performing social control. Strengthening their socio cultural matrix.

What will it take for your project to be successful over the next three years? Please address each year separately, if possible.

To obtain financial resources to generate greater participation of committed territorial collective groups.
To develop a collective health policy to achieve 50% of Chiloe local health teams committed with a knowledge sharing model.
Confidence and commitment to manage to develop a research proposal called “to die in Chiloe: Socio Cultural determinants of death causes in Chiloe. Application at Fonis Chile at present.
Resources to include art therapy like a permanent working line. To date it is sporadic and very scarce resources.
Year 2012
financial resources to strengthen team work with other disciplines such as journalism, audiovisual artists, art therapists, an anthropologist and an additional physician. Provide training to teams to achieve a 100% of hospitals of the province with a collective health approach in their model..
Year 2013
Influence the public health policy aimed at achieving collective health teams by geographical and cultural territories. Create a permanent forum on health issues and social cultural determinants in the province.

What would prevent your project from being a success?

Approximately 250 words left (2000 characters).

How many people will your project serve annually?


What is the average monthly household income in your target community, in US Dollars?

Less than $50

Does your project seek to have an impact on public policy?


What stage is your project in?

Operating for 1‐5 years

In what country?
Is your initiative connected to an established organization?


If yes, provide organization name.

Unidad de salud colectiva del Servicio de Salud Chiloe

How long has this organization been operating?

Less than a year

Does your organization have a Board of Directors or an Advisory Board?

Does your organization have any non-monetary partnerships with NGOs?


Does your organization have any non-monetary partnerships with businesses?


Does your organization have any non-monetary partnerships with government?


Please tell us more about how these partnerships are critical to the success of your innovation.

The idea is base don knowledge and practices sharing and thus organizations, as well as companies and government turn this proposal into a multicultural and plural project.

What are the three most important actions needed to grow your initiative or organization?

Family and community strengthening
Participative action research to generate stakeholders’ articulation.
Education, training and dissemination within teams and community

The Story
What was the defining moment that led you to this innovation?

When I met Machis (Mapuche shamans) or Lawentuchefe (Williche healers), my relationship with them drew me closer to my grandmother and her teachings. My mother also has ample health knowledge and experience from having worked at the Hospital of Concepción, with an integrated training of native knowledge and that of occidental medicine. Meanwhile, my father, a traveling salesman during the summers of his childhood, showed him the roadways of the southern parts of Chile. These trips inspired me a constant search to share everyday experiences with sincere, ordinary people in solidarity. My father’s death, when I was sixteen-years-old, challenged me to continue to live his life trying to understand other people’s experiences and their worlds.
I studied medicine at the University of Concepción. Once I became a surgeon, I went to Traiguén in the Araucanía region working as a general practitioner . There I knew the mapuche people, their ritual of health and I began to work togheter with their traditional healers. I became a self-taught man, going from place to place, traveling through many countries in Latin America and always seeking and synthesizing ancient knowledge of native populations.
In 2003, after years of working with Mapuche communities and directing health programs for indigenous groups, I became the medical VP of the Southern Araucanía Health Service and the Technical Director of the first Mapuche Hospital, created by the community of the Makewe territory. After the Makewe endeavor was well on its way, I moved to Chiloé’s Isla Grande, where I fell in love with the natural beauty of the people and the environment, and I was mystified by their fragility, resilience, and survival. I began to apply my life long knowledge, my experience with the rural world, and my own feelings and world vision and integrated it into all into my new methodology.

Tell us about the social innovator behind this idea.

My grandmother, Jovita Gallegos, was a woman who came fron the rural area to live in Concepción City.
She was always my healer. From her I learned too much about health secrets. She was very consulted by other persons in her neighborhood. While I studied for a medical doctor I lived in her house.
One day she died at home. I always remebered her knowledge and practices about health, illnes, life and death.

How did you first hear about Changemakers?

Newsletter from Changemakers

If through another, please provide the name of the organization or company

50 words or fewer