Posted by: calloftheandes | February 27, 2015

Hundreds Expected for Annual Medical Conference in Ecuador

An organizer of Jornadas Médicas, an upcoming medical conference in Ecuador, anticipates it will be “a celebration where sharing knowledge and experiences is very important to us.”
“What I like about Jornadas Médicas is seeing young people who are developing professionally. They’re coming here to learn,” said Dr. José Luis Recalde. “What happens is that they listen to the ideas. But people aren’t only listening, they’re also invited to participate. They’re invited to interact with the conference speakers who are very open and willing to talk.”
Family medicine is the central theme of this year’s conference for Ecuadorian health professionals set for April 20-25. Organizers are coordinating with dozens of conference speakers for the five-day event, including specialists from Ecuador and elsewhere in the world. This year’s event returns to the nation’s capital of Quito following a one-year hiatus.

Dr. José Luis Recalde

Dr. José Luis Recalde

While the conference is considered the core academic event at Reach Beyond’s Hospital Vozandes-Quito (HVQ) each year, due to unforeseen circumstances, organizers were unable to hold the event in 2014.
“It had to be suspended due to logistical and other problems that no longer apply,” explained Recalde, director of medical education at HVQ. The mission agency, which owns and operates the 76-bed facility, announced in mid-2013 that it would sell the hospital, only to see the deal fall through a year later.
Recalde said this year’s conference will be the 27th Jornadas Médicas and the 12th such event distributed via satellite to more than 20 virtual classrooms across Ecuador. As in the past, the Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja (Technical University in Loja) will handle the satellite delivery.
Other conference collaborators include Quito’s Universidad Católica (Catholic University), Sociedad Ecuatoriana de Medicina Familiar (Ecuadorian Family Medicine Society) and high schools in Pichincha province that are preparing students for studies in medicine.
The conference, consisting of plenary sessions, forums and workshops, is valued by attendees for its continuing education credits as well as the professional development offered. Several pre-conference courses will award attendees with certificates of attendance, according to Recalde.
This year’s Jornadas Médicas will also serve to contribute to a celebration of the hospital’s 60th anniversary. Officially opened in 1955 as Rimmer Memorial Hospital, HVQ later took on the name “Vozandes” for its sponsoring entity, “Voice of the Andes,” an international shortwave radio station with the call sign HCJB. The hospital began as a 35-bed facility and during the 1990s was expanded to its present size.
Early in the 1960s, a medical residency was established in ophthalmology under the leadership of Dr. Gustavo Moreno. Two decades later, medical residents at HVQ were able to begin pursuing a family practice residency, thanks to the efforts of Drs. Ev Bruckner, Gil Wagoner Cal Wilson and Roy Ringenberg.
Presently, with a program for undergraduates as well, some 70 students are furthering their medical studies at HVQ.
Recalde’s organizing committee projects that 450 to 500 medical professionals will attend the event at the Larson Conference Center on Radio Station HCJB’s campus. In past years, hundreds more participated via the satellite link.
During the last decade, the hospital’s family medicine physicians and residents have carried the blessings of the gospel of Christ to faraway parts of the world. In early 2005, for example, a team of Quito-based physicians helped with tsunami relief in Indonesia. Concluding their ministry trip, team members were engulfed in yet another disaster when an 8.7-strength earthquake struck. They returned and ministered longer through medicine.
Subsequent periodic trips have seen HVQ staff in Asia, Africa and South America to respond to disasters and/or to offer medical help and the hope of Christ to people. These trips have provided medical residents the opportunities not only to help patients, but also to gain valuable experience in cross-cultural ministry.


  1. […] In the book’s acknowledgments, Zurita thanks HVQ Director Dr. Ximena Pacheco. She credits the title, 15 Años Vigilando Lo Invisible, as a suggestion offered by the hospital’s medical education director, Dr. José Luis Recalde. […]

  2. […] (HVQ) in Ecuador, will be one of the speakers at the hospital’s annual medical conference, called Jornadas Médicas, April 20-25. She will give a presentation about prenatal education and a holistic approach on child development […]

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