Saturday, November 6, 2010

Conclusions of the Week

Through out the week I tried to figure out what I could blog about next. I started this blog on Saturday afternoon, and it has been a great day. It began with breakfast of Oma Pancakes with mangos, hmm. (I was able to buy a pineapple and 2 mangoes – the price equivalent to 1 Canadian dollar). I also climbed Mount Motigo this morning with some friends. My roommate is training to climb Mount Kenya so she climbed it twice yesterday, but once was good enough for me (I also got a little sunburnt; I am hoping it will fade into a tan but we shall see). 

From the top of Motigo, the rain never did come.

In the afternoon I met my new roommate. There are now 3 of us in #10. The day ended with apple pie and frozen yogurt with some friends. A very enjoyable day.

Life at the hospital is going well and I am starting to settle into some routine. A typical day starts at 8:00 with morning report. I meet with the physicians, residents and med students. Here we either have a presentation by an intern or discuss some of the cases that came in overnight. Morning report is also the time where any visiting staff are introduced. We start the day with prayer, this prayer seems to be more real than the morning prayer at the Mis. After morning report I head off to ICU and recovery room (ICU overflow) and discover what happened overnight – who is ventilated, who self extubated and who is newly admitted. This is also the time when medicine, peds, and surgery services do their ICU rounds (the ICU is an open ICU).  I try to participate on rounds and use it as a time to educate the staff on respiratory related things.

After rounds in ICU I do my own rounds in the nursery, ER, medicine, surgery and pediatrics. As I check out what is on all the units I look for patients who look very ill, find their charts and figure out if I can do anything or offer any advice to help out the staff. A challenge here is that just because a medication is ordered and available the nurses will not give it. Bad asthmatics are routinely ordered hourly Ventolin and it will probably be given a few times a day – so I help out the patient (and physicians) by reminding the nurses to give the medication. Usually the discussion with the nurse goes something like this, “this child sounds really wheezy does he/she have Ventolin? Oh look he/she does have it ordered. I think this child could use some now they sound really wheezy”. This usually works and the nurse proceeds to give the patient Ventolin, and I come back in an hour or two and repeat the process. The rest of the day proceeds along this pattern going from unit to unit helping out where I can. A unique thing about the hospital is sound travels everywhere through the open windows. This is sometimes advantageous as I can hear the ventilator, and SpO2 monitor (the really loud Nellcor machine) alarming from the other wards in the hospital. The only problem is I do not know why it is alarming – 90% percent of the time it is because the machine has been disconnected and no one has bothered to put it back on or silence the alarm. So this is my day.

I work Monday to Friday, at the beginning of the week I am going strong and I am able to handle the amount of sickness and death that I see. By Friday things are a lot harder to handle.

I met with World Gospel Mission pastors this week and they encouraged me to continue my personal devotions to not get worn down. This message was timely as Friday morning I found two ventilated patients in the ICU, one of whom, a young lady who had poisoned herself, was critically ill. Her heart had stopped overnight and she required CPR, this lady had also been 25 weeks pregnant, the poison and cardiac arrest caused the baby to die. Please pray for this young lady as she is still critically ill. After I learned about this lady I went to check on the other ventilated patient who had been ventilated for a week for Tetanus. The monitor was not reading the heart rhythm so I grabbed a sticker to replace the one that had fallen off. I replaced it and the rhythm was still not picking up. The SpO2 was not picking up either, I checked the probe and found that it was on the patient, I than checked for the pulse, at this point I called the physician over as I could not find a pulse. The patient in the ICU had died without anyone noticing (this would not happen back home). This made my morning discouraging, but heeding the advice of the pastors I spent some time during my lunch break in prayer and study of God’s word. God is good and led me to a bible verse:
John 6:27
Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”
This is a verse I heard before but it spoke to me now – life here will end but Eternal life in God is forever, and that is what the mission here really is. 

A Massai Lady at the hospital in her normal attire, it is beautiful

1 comment:

  1. Hi Annette... we enjoy reading this, so keep it up! Praying for you!