Young Burn Victim Returns to Costa Rica

February 10, 2006

Seven months after two-year-old Santos Bonilla was flown to the United States for treatment of his life-threatening burns, he returned to Costa Rica with doctors reporting a nearly complete recovery.

Bonilla, now 3, returned Saturday and is being cared for at the National Children’s Hospital in San José.

The burns that covered 86% of his body following a fire that ravaged his family’s south-central San José home June 28 were too serious for the Children’s Hospital, so Dr. Roberto Steele, who oversaw Bonilla’s treatment, brought his plight to the attention of the Shriners Club of Costa Rica, an international charitable organization that operates 22 Shriners Hospitals throughout North America to care for children with financial need.

With their own funding, as well as help from others – including generous Tico Times readers – the club arranged for Santos to be flown to the ShrinersHospital in Galveston, Texas for treatment, with no charge to his family.

Steele told The Tico Times that Bonilla is at the Children’s Hospital not for medical reasons, but because doctors and social workers are ensuring that his future living conditions at home with his family are adequate and will allow him to continue his recovery.

The doctor added that Bonilla, accompanied throughout his stay in Texas by his father, has now been reunited with his  mother. The child will need to return to Galveston once every three months or so for further treatment.

At a Shriners Club banquet Jan. 14, held to thank various organizations that helped raise money for Santos’ care, The Tico Times was honored for its article by reporting intern Patsy Wilson (TT, July 15, 2005), which inspired readers to contribute funds toward the cause.

 

You may be interested

Bright Lights Boat Parade inaugurates holiday season in Quepos
Events
186 views
Events
186 views

Bright Lights Boat Parade inaugurates holiday season in Quepos

Elizabeth Lang - December 11, 2017

The Bright Lights Boat Parade marked the official kickoff of the holiday season in the Central Pacific town of Quepos…

Strong winds cause three deaths in Costa Rica, one in El Salvador
Weather
2525 views
Weather
2525 views

Strong winds cause three deaths in Costa Rica, one in El Salvador

AFP - December 10, 2017

Three people have died in Costa Rica, includiing two Swiss tourists, and one in El Salvador as a result of…

6 camouflaged Costa Rican creatures you probably haven’t seen
Environment and Wildlife
2616 views
Environment and Wildlife
2616 views

6 camouflaged Costa Rican creatures you probably haven’t seen

Lindsay Fendt - December 9, 2017

The jungle can be a scary place, and even for some of the fiercest of Costa Rica’s creatures, sometimes the…