Long Road from Quito
Transforming Health Care in Rural Latin America
224 pages, 5.50 x 8.50
Paperback | 9780268105334 | March 2019
eBook (Web PDF) | 9780268105358 | March 2019
eBook (EPUB) | 9780268105365 | March 2019
Long Road from Quito presents a fascinating portrait of David Gaus, an unlikely trailblazer with deep ties to the University of Notre Dame and an even more compelling postgraduate life. Gaus is co-founder, with his mentor Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., of Andean Health and Development (AHD), an organization dedicated to supporting health initiatives in South America. Tony Hiss traces the trajectory of Gaus's life from an accounting undergraduate to a medical doctor committed to bringing modern medicine to poor, rural communities in Ecuador. When he began his medical practice in 1996, the best strategy in these areas consisted of providing preventive measures combined with rudimentary clinical services. Gaus, however, realized he had to take on a much more sweeping approach to best serve sick people in the countryside, who would have to take a five-hour truck ride to Quito and the nearest hospital. He decided to bring the hospital to the patients. He has now done so twice, building two top-of-the-line hospitals in Pedro Vicente Maldonado and Santo Domingo, Ecuador. The hospitals, staffed only by Ecuadorians, train local doctors through a Family Medicine residency program, and are financially self-sustaining. His work with AHD is recognized as a model for the rest of Latin America, and AHD has grown into a major player in global health, frequently partnering with the World Health Organization and other international agencies. With a charming, conversational style that is a pleasure to read, Hiss shows how Gaus's vision and determination led to these accomplishments, in a story with equal parts interest for Notre Dame readers, health practitioners, medical anthropologists, Latin American students and scholars, and the general public.
Tony Hiss, an author, lecturer, and consultant on restoring America's cities and landscapes, is the author of thirteen books, including The Experience of Place, The View from Alger’s Window, and In Motion: The Experience of Travel. Hiss was a staff writer at the New Yorkerfor more than thirty years, and since then has been a visiting scholar at New York University.
"Long Road from Quito: Transforming Health Care in Rural Latin America is well written and captures the attention of the reader; the many examples provide a colorful and vivid narrative that makes this book a page turner. Tony Hiss knows how to tell a story, and the reader gets an excellent in-depth impression of the context based on the vivid descriptions provided." —Clemens Sedmak, author of A Church of the Poor
"If you are lucky, a few times in life you will come across a person who is able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. It is even rarer still to find in such a leader a genuine sense of humility and a depth of soul that radiates joy and laughter. I know you will enjoy and be inspired by this story of a modern-day man who is as holy as he is innovative, who is as determined as he is fun, and who is both visionary and focused on the set of eyes before him at any given moment." —Lou Nanni, from the foreword
“Long Road from Quito also depicts a challenge far greater than geographic isolation—namely, how rural populations differ from urban populations in their perception of health and disease. Such insights are essential not just in Ecuador but in much of the world, including industrialized nations.” —American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
"The book succeeds in helping readers understand the lack of medical care in rural areas—the 'urban bias' of where doctors want to practice—and the unique geographic and social problems that complicate access to health care." —Mark Curnutte, Cincinnati Enquirer, author of A Promise in Haiti
“[David] Gaus’ journey from an accounting undergraduate to a medical doctor hailed as a hero in Ecuador, with hesburgh as inspiration and partner, is recounted in the new book, Long Road from Quito, by journalist Tony Hiss.” —Notre Dame Magazine
"Long Road from Quito by Tony Hiss is an extraordinary combination of biography and history . . . an especially and unreservedly recommended addition to community and academic library Contemporary American Biography collections in general, and Latin American Medical History supplemental studies reading lists in particular. . . . With a charming conversational style that's a pleasure to read, Hiss shows . . . Gaus's vision and determination . . . in a story with equal parts interest for Notre Dame readers, health practitioners, medical anthropologists, Latin American students and scholars, and the general public." —John Taylor, Midwest Book Review
"[This] narrative has the contents, structure, and timing to engage the reader with the details of the philosophy, biography, and determination of David Gaus, a young accountant who took a charity trip to Quito in 1984. His trip ended up transforming him into a physician for the poor, a hospital builder, and an educator in rural Ecuador." —Choice
"For family physicians with an interest in global health, rural medicine, and tropical disease, plus an appreciation for a well-told story, this book is a great read. Thoroughly entertaining while still conveying a message about how global health can be done well and responsibly, the book gives a sense of hope and energy." —Family Medicine