The medical team spent the last two days in the village of Asantekwa and faced extreme crowds and extreme heat. There were many moments to remember …
There were heartbreaking moments … Dr. Charlie cared for a teenager in terribly ill health due to chronic osteomyelitis (bone infection) simply due to lack of access to health care at the right time in his young life. Collecting statistics on the number of children each woman has lost continues to be heartbreaking for us all. I’m so thankful for the Leyaata program which is saving a generation of children and a soon-to-be hospital which will put an end to so many needless deaths.
We served hard, caring for many SIPs (seriously ill patients). Our nursing station had ten kids and four adults on IV fluids on Tuesday alone. Right at the end of the clinic a woman, bitten by a viper, arrived by taxi.
Pharmacy was able to wrap up in record time (4:01 pm to be exact) and we finished the day by receiving our third ram and many yams. The chief made a special point of saying how much they appreciated the gentle hands with which we cared for their people. It was great feedback, as our goal is always to give each patient our attention, love and compassion despite the crowds, noise and distractions.
There were some fun and lighthearted moments … Dr. John decided to rig up some music during the set-up of our clinic and “You Raise Me Up” played on a wireless speaker while we all sang along. Watching team members find ways of dealing with the extreme heat gave us all a few laughs too. My favourite is watching team members resort to wiping their faces with Lysol wipes in a desperate attempt to lower their body temperature. They work!
There were hopeful moments … What a privilege to work along side and transfer skills to NEA scholars. Moses is a fourth year medical student sponsored by NEA; Eric is a nurse anaethetist who is being sponsored to do his Masters of Anaesthesia by NEA; and Emmanuel, David and Brenda’s nephew, is studying pharmacy on scholarship from NEA. Abraham, our fearless and kind leader, just completed his Masters of Hospital Administration in England. The future of health care delivery at our NEA hospital is so very bright with these capable young professionals preparing to serve.
Gentle hands were also at work back on the compound in the operating theatres as our surgical team operated from dawn to well after dusk. They too are facing very challenging conditions in which to work but are completing long lists due to the support from wonderful nurses, the anaesthesia team and NEA support staff.
And we must not forget about the gentle hands of Dr. Martin who had a very productive day restoring sight and preventing blindness due to glaucoma. Let the blind see.
Today and tomorrow we have home court advantage as we all remain on the compound together to run the last two clinics for the Carpenter area. St. Augustine said, “Pray as though everything depended on God; work as though everything depended on you.” What a combination! Thanks to friends and family praying for us and sending through comments of encouragement as we make every effort to work hard, finish well, and return home to our loved ones.