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Published: October 19th 2013
Brook getting her blood drawn for malaria and typhoid!! She looks pretty good all things considered
I can't believe it's already Saturday again!!! The days here are so long but the weeks fly by.
Last Sunday, brook, one of the other volunteers here wasn't feeling so hot. We all have gotten on and off sick with GI bugs here and there, but she actually spiked a fever so we decided to go to the clinic. Sundays are days of worship here- mass on Sunday typically goes from 9am to 1 or 2 pm and is basically a giant party- lots of singing and dancing. I wish church was like that at home!
Anyways, because it was Sunday there was only one nurse, a friend of ours named Francisca, working the clinic. She didn't have access to the medications and the lab was closed, so we had no way of getting brook a diagnosis or treatment in senya. All they would be able to do for us is give her some IV Fluid.
The two of us took a cab to winneba, the local hospital that we refer our sickest clinic patients to. It's about 45 minutes away. She got a blood test, but while she was waiting for the results she passed
Taking Esther to the dentist!
out, started projectile vomiting, etc. poor girl has typhoid AND malaria. She got three injections, anti malarial meds, oral rehydration solution packets that you mix with water, and iron supplements. The whole process cost about $40 USD because she doesn't have Ghanaian insurance. This explains why our locals without insurance put off going to to doctors until they're terribly ill... That's a lot of money here!
We decided to go to Accra for a few days because brook was obviously feeling terrible. That way she wouldBe close to the airport and the big hospital if needed. We stayed in the IVHQ volunteer house. I went with her to keep an eye on her and by Tuesday she felt well enough to come back to senya. She's barely even jaundiced now so that's good! Unfortunately when we tested her labs again on Wednesday her typhoid had quadrupled so now we are treating that more aggressively as well... This girl can't catch a break!
Malaria is very strange because it his you hard all of a sudden.... Multiple times I have been conversing with a pt with malaria and they just pass out all of a sudden, or start vomiting.
Esther keepin busy doodling in my journal
The infants usually seize. On the flip side, it also responds quickly to treatment and our patients who were seizing/fainting/hallucinating are able to walk out of the clinic a few hours later.
On Thursday brook and i took my "favorite" (even though we're not allowed to have favorites) kid to winneba to see the dentist. Esther had two HUGE cavities in her back molars. We took two trotros and a taxi there. Got a few strange looks being the two white girls with the black toddler traveling by ourselves haha.
Side note: everyone here is so generous! We were on the tro and there was a woman behind us who had bought a piece of fried dough for her three kids to share for lunch. Even though she didn't have much food she still offered to share some with us. In Ghana, if you want to share food you say "you are invited." Luckily I had some cookies in my bag so I could invite her to some of our food as well.
We got to winneba and registered Esther, then waited two hours to go to the dentist. She kept herself busy for two hours just
scribbling in my notebook... She's three years old and she's probably only held a pen or marker half a dozen times in her life. I was terrified of what the dentists office would look like.. We went into a drab concrete building with dirt floors and unpainted walls and were led down a hallway to one room with a fraying sign that said "dental." I was so worried for Esther ( haha I'm getting quite maternal with her, I kind of feel like shes my kid...) but when they opened the door... Oh my god.
I felt like I'd found the door to narnia. Sterile instruments. A reclining exam chair. Gloves. Local anesthetic. HEAVEN!!! This place was actually legit. Esther was a champ. She barely even cried. The md was even good with kids and let her look at the instructs before he filled her teeth. We got an oral antibiotic to take home and she appears to be feeling much better now.
After we got back to senya we stopped at our favorite chopShop with Esther and the three of us shared fufu and ground nut soup with rice... Yum! She forgave us for taking her to
Esther eating fufu
the dentist after we got her a treat haha. Otherwise, not much else going on. The clinic is cool and i like working there, but I really find myself missing the kids while I'm at work. Missing Boston and everyone back home but really loving it here!
We took the older kids to the beach the other day. Such a good time! Ill put up a few pictures of that as well.
Ps- our well has run dry. Not sure when well be getting water again, but we have plenty of bagged drinking water so were fine. However, it's been four days since I've been able to bathe... Oh well, all part of the experience I guess? Looking forward to a hot shower in two months! Haha
Tot: 2.747s; Tpl: 0.138s; cc: 9; qc: 49; dbt: 0.1108s; 2; m:saturn w:www (220.127.116.11); sld: 3;
; mem: 1.4mb