| Oct 29, 2009
We define ourselves by the best that is in us, not the worst that has been done to us.
Thank you Carol, for sending that quote, it’s beautiful and so true. The “We part of it” is important. Here, the people of Medical Teams International do not define these people by what has been done. They are valued as God values them.
The Southwest Ugandan geography is beautiful. Lush valleys, banana fields, long horned cows that look like they will fall over due to their horn size, multiple small goats on little mounds, occasional avocado trees, achacia trees that are BEAUTIFUL, and some flowering trees.
The potential for cultivation in the refugee camps is great. They are given seeds I believe, by UNHCR “United Nations High Commission for Refugees.”
We are wondering if anyone is teaching them to balance what they grow. I know that Medical Teams International (MTI) has a new project in Guatemala that is educating the people on what to grow to balance their diet. The Guatemalan children apparently have the worst nutritional status in the world and are the most stunted. Not hungry but malnourished. Thank you MTI, I love you once again ….
Faith … what a lovely thing to share so transparently. I wish I could do the same at all times. I love the loveliness and sincerity of faith in these people.
I found myself holding my half-filled water bottle in the car with the smiling kids running along side yelling “Babo, babo.” They really do use the water bottles for many things, not to mention a basic container. I found myself thinking, “I’ll wait until I drink it and toss to other kids” and then stopped and thought “WHAT THE HECK AM I THINKING?” and tossed it out to a smiling kid.
Another external example of an internal faith that brings such joy… Some things to jot down for my memory… (sorry if some of this is boring to you, or if the faith stuff bugs you, or the rambling, but this is my way of remembering this incredible experience and also getting out my thoughts.)
My team is made up of 3 people this time. Dr. Jo is from Ottawa and it’s his second MTI trip (and second Ugandan trip too). He’s an ER doc that does a variety of things and is well balanced in his skills. Nurse Deanna is from Lake Coeur d’alene, ID, is a retired neonatal nurse who has done mission trips with Mercy Ships and MTI for about 11 years. She volunteers with the local ambulance and is also well balanced. Me, well I’m still playing dress up for doctor but am more comfy all the time.
The MTI staff is a great resource and we are consulting with each other often. Our clinic is held in a nice building that was donated/loaned to MTI by the UN after they left, apparently for us to use ‘til we no longer need it? We have pre-natal clinic on Monday and Friday where hundred+ pregnant woman line up to be seen by a midwife. I’ve not seen a delivery yet but have been asked to be called. Love that delivery stuff!
Med prescribing, WOW is this an improvement. We are NOT prescribing meds for malaria as much as before, i.e. any kid with a fever.
Malaria rapid tests cost $0.50 each vs $5.00 to treat for Falciparum Malaria, the severest form. (Our driver Peter’s wife had a still birth a couple weeks ago at 8-½ months due to Malaria infection, it’s VERY dangerous in pregnancy) The incidence, based on the last months teams “rough” assessment, was that 1 in 20 was positive. Do the math, $10 to test 20, $5 to treat the one for total of $15, as opposed to $100 to treat all the fevers. This is not only better treatment but better use of the donors $$$.
MTI’s $30 that converts to $3500 in care goes further, yahoo! We are also trying not to prescribe antibiotics unless we are sure they are necessary. Lots of viral stuff in these camps, diarrhea, etc. And LOTS of worms.
My sickest little patient today was this BEAUTIFUL little 10 day old baby girl. On day 2 she developed a pimply rash that progressed to these huge blisters. Looked like she’d been burned.
They weren't infected (yet). Momma was doing a great job, but I consulted with Dr Jo and she was given two IV doses of antibiotics to prevent infection) the IV doses were actually recommended by the Ugandan staff and sent with oral Amoxicillin. The blisters were
cleaned and treated with silvadene cream like a burn victim.
She’ll most likely do great. The staff gave momma a telephone number so she could find someone with a cell to call us for the ambulance to pick her up if she got sicker, too long of a walk. How cool is that that MTI has a little ambulance to shuttle and pick them up. Isn’t she beautiful? Lord help her to survive...Well, goodnight all. Thank you Lord, once again for these people and for bringing me here.