Tuesday, July 6, 2010

“The Medical Clinic”

Saturday and Sunday while we were in Mosiro, we hosted medical clinics. The Maasai came from all around, having heard via word of mouth that we would be there.

Michelle, Jen and several others worked in triage, taking vital signs and medical history on the patients. Each patient got a number then and would wait for hours to see the one doctor we had with us – Cathy, the OB/GYN from Indiana. The two nurses from Nairobi, Andrew and Naphtali, worked with us.

I started out with Val and a couple other girls in the pharmacy. Andrew told us what to write on the little pocket envelopes and how many of which pills to put in each one. The girls would look at me then and ask, “What does he mean?” The prescription jargon such as QID or gtts meant nothing to them. So I translated it into English for them.

We saw such a blur of patients.

The most memorable was the young man who had been in a knife fight in Nairobi. He actually had been treated at the time, getting stitches in the deep three inch laceration on his arm. Problem was he didn’t take care of it after that. He never had the sutures taken out and the whole thing got infected. Cathy opened it up and drained it, put on a clean dressing and ordered a shot of penicillin. Every one was pretty grossed out by it (and I was afraid you would be too, so I didn’t post the pictures of it), but it didn’t look worse than some of the stuff I’d seen in outpatient surgery back home.

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