Published: August 14th 2012August 14th 2012
So, we've finished all our interviews with key informants in the pharmacy/surveillance field. Now starts the analysis process. Unfortunately, as good as my Spanish is, even with recordings, I'm afraid my notes might not be that useful, and listening to the recordings is a challenge because of how quickly people are speaking. While I can hold a conversation in Spanish, listening to a recording and having to look up word after word is incredibly time-consuming, so my partner and a volunteer are going to listen and translate the pertinent info into English. Our final paper will be in English anyways, so it makes sense. I've been working on the paper itself, at least the background, methods, and discussion sections. While I might not have all the details for the analysis, I know the general themes we've discussed during the interviews, so I can start writing about barriers and potential solutions and the general tone of the results at least.
On another note, just wanted to share some Peruvian news with anyone actually reading this.
There has been a lot of controversy/fighting about mines in Peru. The gist is, other countries, especially the US, have been buying natural resources such as minerals in Peru without giving anything back, without regard for the consequences of poor mining practices. Now, more than 100 Peruvian farmers in Cajamarca have been sickened by the spill of a copper concentrate containing arsenic and lead from a burst pipeline. Most of the sick people got infected when they were trying to prevent the chemicals from getting to a nearby river, thus further contaminating the surrounding environment. US mining companies have already been responsible for pollution of several lakes in the same area, forcing people to move their homes to avoid sickness and contaminated drinking water. President Ollanta Humala promised during his campaign that he would reduce outside influence on Peruvian mining operations, giving control back to the people. However, he instead opened up more mines to foreign companies, causing people to protest and stall mining operations. Five people were killed by police during the first week of July at protests against the multi-billion-dollar Conga gold and copper project, which will be the largest mine in Peru’s history if it goes ahead. And guess who owns the mineral rights? US-based Newmont Mining Group. I hope Peru starts to follow in Bolivia's footsteps (who is working on kicking out the Coca-Cola company) and take better control over who can operate in-country, by decreasing the influence of foreign companies and giving power back to domestic companies.