Fall In Love With More Free Templates! Click Here To Get Your Own Smitten Blog Design... »

Monday, February 8, 2010

Welcome to Haiti!

Omg what a day. No pictures from today bc I was way too overwhelmed. This place is amazing. They have really stepped it up to take care of all these people. The count today was around 420 patients (this was originally a 70 bed hospital...) they bulldozed a field and put up these MASSIVE tents lined with cots that are all full with patients and their families. The patient care culture is different down here-the family is at the bedside round the clock and they're the ones cleaning the pts, cooking the food, feeding the pts etc. Its amazing to see how involved all the family members are bc back home, the family rarely participates in the daily care and the nurse does everything. The only side of it that's hard down here is that some people don't have any family left or their family is in port au prince. There's a woman who has a fractured pelvis and lumbar who is actually able to stand but they don't have the equipment to operate on her here but she wants to go back to port au prince bc her 2 young sons are there by themselves with no one left but without an operation, she probably won't survive the trip to port au prince...

We heard a story tonight about a little baby boy probably 18 months who was choppered in after having his leg amputated and his chart and armband just said "baby boy" bc he had no one left to even tell someone his name. One of the volunteers took him to a mother there with her 12 year old son and asked her to take care of him and she gladly has been taking great care of him. And they gave him a name and he's now responding to his new name and bonding with his new mother.

Two of the cutest kids are a boy and a girl burn victims-one non-quake related (his shirt caught on fire) and the other was in the kitchen during the earthquake and a big pot of boiling water fell on her. They are actually getting set up to go with a group of other kids to be treated in the US bc they just won't survive staying here.

It is definitely more primitive down here and you make the best of what you got-in the OR they wash and reuse lap sponges and suction containers, etc. There's flies flying around and lizards climbing up the walls. The OR has one sink that serves as a decontam sink and the scrub sink for the six rooms. Philips donated new monitors for all the ORs and before that, they just didn't monitor the pts during surgery. The concept of anesthesia making the pt comfortable during surgery was new to them bc they were used to just having the pts more on the awake side bc they couldn't monitor anything.

Oh and speaking of the OR, I showed up and got my tour and then was taken to meet Colleen, who I was told ran the OR down here. I figured she would tell me what to do, where to go, etc. Well she kept introducing me as her replacement and I thought she was kidding. Turns out, its no joke. Starting tomorrow i'm running the OR bc Colleen's leaving. This is about to get very interesting... Oh and my favorite is there is a pediatric orthopedic fellow from Texas who wears cowboy boots in the OR (with shoe covers over them) it made my day!

One of our first cases is a 2 month old baby that was found in the rubble under about ten dead bodies, and
the pressure on his hip caused a massive ulcer. Its absolutely heart breaking.

Alright I have got to go to sleep (ps I totally made friends with the right people bc I got upgraded from a cot in tent to a matress over a cot inside an actual room!) bc I know tomorrow's gonna be a long day... Hopefully i'll take pictures tomorrow. Love you all! Keep us in your thoughts and prayers!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

1 comment:

  1. Hello,
    I'm a long-time friend of your mom and Katie from Lourdes. I'm looking forward to hearing about your trip. I have been to CRUDEM 3 times working with various medical teams. I can't imagine how it's changed in just a few weeks. I am sure you will have an amazing experience. I SOOOO wish I could be there as well. But with a 1 and 2 yr old, it's not that easy anymore to drop everything and go! Will you do me a favor and ask around to see if anyone has gotten any news about Francious. She cooked for me when I was there....and was like my second mother during my stay. I don't think anyone's heard from here since the earthquake. Take care of yourself. Karen