Published: January 29th 2009January 29th 2009
Well... after a long day of walking around Accra alone, I felt the need for a reminder of home. I made my way through the city by foot to a little Irish Bar started by some expats who live here. I met some other travelers and felt recharged. It's now safe to say that cheesy Irish-themed bars are quite literally everywhere :)
I am now set up in my student hostel near Korle Bu hospital. Korle Bu is just outside the city center (slightly too far to walk) and the hostel is even further away (about 1.5 miles from the hospital). Photos to come! There's a bus each morning that takes students to work. I live in a room with another medical student from Nigeria whom I've not yet met.
Korle Bu hospital is a large medical campus. The University of Ghana medical schools and dental schools (and several other programs) are situated here as well. I did some administration stuff at the hospital today and met some of the medical staff, all of whom are beyond friendly. I didn't "see" any patients today (I saw some I suppose, I just
didn't treat them) but I did see the hospital wards which are well-stocked and organized... but they are, predictably, less modern than facilities back in the US (old buildings, simple and shabby, no air conditioning, limited medical equipment).
As an aside... I'll post a summary of the Ghanaian healthcare system and related political ongoings soon.
Given the presence of the medical school, there are plenty of medical students here as well... most are from Ghana and Nigeria, and others are from Namibia, Botswana and, I'm sure, other African nations.
Everyone has been very cool and friendly. Everywhere I've been in Accra so far... people ask where I'm from and, once I say USA, they exlaim: "Obama!". Here at the medical school... this is also true, but in addition several students have brought up Ben Carson... who (for my non-medical readers) is a famous neurosurgeon (graduate of Uof Michigan Med School, now practices at Johns Hopkins) , famously helped separate a pair of conjoined twins from Iran, and is the subject of an upcoming TV movie special starring Cuba Gooding Jr. based on Carson's autobiography, "Gifted Hands".
There are computers with internet capability here... but access is
limited and the internet is extremely slow. The internet has hit Ghana in a big way!... and despite the dial-up speed, I'm so grateful to have web access!
Gotta go sort out dinner! Photos to come!
There are more photos below