Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Our traveling clinic in Martisa
Got up early to run to the border of Bon Repos and took a picture of the sun rise and the crack on the road created by the earthquake.
We took a long tap tap ride to Martisa up in the mountains. Kim and I were to run the clinic there. Edza and Juvenile live here and Edza saw a need for a clinic for the people here. We arrived at 10:30 am and the inner waiting room and the outer waiting room which was sheltered by a tarp were already filled with people waiting for us. The waiting room led into a large windowless dark room and off to one side was a tiny exam room with a window which had the only natural lighting for the entire place. Kim and I decided to share this tiny space to see the patients. The pharmacist and the triage nurse would use the big dark room. We emptied our bag of supplies and medicines and started to see patients.
One of our patients was a 12-year-old with a very high fever and bone pain, malaria versus typhoid fever but we had no testing kits. She felt more comfortable when her fever came down and we realized that we could not find chloroquine for malaria. We treated her for typhoid and she would get testings done in another clinic. A woman came in with a lump on her breast and we could not do much for her but advised her to go to a hospital. A young boy was brought in with a punctured wound to his foot four days ago and now the leg was very swollen and warm with big lymph nodes. It was quite infected but I also feared that he might have tetanus. We sent him off to a hospital for treatment.
By 2 o'clock, Kim told me that we were to stop seeing patients and head back to Blanchard to pick up the rest of the team. This was the first time I learned that clinic was to stop at two. There were still many patients waiting to be seen. We decided to have lunch only to find that our bag of PB and J was invaded by ants. So no lunch for us but we got some cold drinks. Onwards we plunged to see the rest of the patients till 4:30 pm. Between the two of us we saw about 80 patients.
Edza took us back through a winding mountain road, there were random destructions with rubbles filling one side of the road making the two way road into a one-way street. Some parts of the street were filled with vendors. It takes a brave driver to negotiate such narrow street. We could see the sea from this high vantage point, this whole place could be idyllic and quaint if the buildings were done right and the road were kept in good condition.
We drove through part of Port-au-Prince on our way home.