Saturday, September 19, 2009

It's hot in the bush--19-September-2009

Well it got to 105 today! We were in the pool after lunch to cool off! the water temp was only 80 and so it felt cold to me!
this week has been very busy. I have added 104 new patients on ART this month and it is not over yet! We could add a 1000 more a month if we had the staff and time! People say AIDS is improving and there are less new cases, but we haven't seen that!
Lori arrived last night and she is happy to be back and I put her to work today! The doctors are away today for their continuation education day so it was the nurses in charge day!
Last night Dr. Murenje called me to deliver a footling breech. I was able get both feet down and then the hands and finally the head--the baby and mom did well. My heart always races until that head is out! It weighed almost 8 pounds. It was her second baby!
Do you know we have become a bubble gum nation? Here they do not use coins so when you need change when buying groceries they give you bubble gum! I pass mine on to my kids I treat. If they owe you more then 20 cents you get a pen (which usually skips when you write). If it is a good day and they owe you 50 cents or more you get a chocolate bar!
This has not been a good week for electricity. No dinnertime electricity and last night it went off at 4 p.m. and didn't come on until 1 a.m. now it is off again at 5 p.m.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Life in the African bush

Well this is the end of a busy week. Major and Dr. Zimudzi went off to South Africa to pick up Lori, a nurse who is joining our work for at least the next 2 years! She arrives in Joberg on Tuesday morning. My visitor, Charolette is being dropped off in Bulawayo this evening to spend a few days with friends while the guys go on to SA. she was born and grew up in Bulawayo so she is going home!

This has been a busy week with Wednesday having a staff inservice with our nurses and talking about a patient who got mismanaged in labor. This patient was complete for 5 hours and no one notified the doctor or myself until the baby came out flat and needed to be revived and eventually died within 24 hours. We used this as a "learning experience" to talk about what to do and what is normal when a woman gets to complete. Everyone said the understood! That evening just as I went to do some Lumbar Punctures on the wards, I noticed an OB chart at the nurses desk showing a patient had been complete at 930 a.m. and no further charting. When I asked why the chart was there someone said "oh actually she is not delivered!" I screamed what and went running off to the labor ward. It was now almost 4:30 p.m. and I quickly pulled the baby out with a vacumn extractor and laid into every nurse on that shift and sent for the ones that went home. Luckily the baby was strong and came out screaming! Now both of us were screaming--I am not sure who was louder! So much for understanding the in-service! The answer I got when I asked why they didn't notify someone, was that at 930 they notified the doctor who checked her, ruptured her membranes and told them "she will deliver, don't worry!" So they didn't worry and they were waiting for her to deliver! No charting from 930 a.m. on, no fetal heart, no descent of the head, no contrations because the doctor said she would deliver! I went home with a strong headache that night!
To top it off that afternoon Major got back from 2 days in Harare where he went to get the car serviced in preparation for the trip to SA. when he got on the dirt road he noticed something like diesel flicking up on the back window. When he stopped to check it he couldn't see anything dripping so he came the rest of the way. He got home and had the guys put the car over the pit and surprise--the found they had not put in one of the plugs in where they had drained out the diff oil in and didn't refill it! Amazing that he got here without the engine seizing--a true miracle to drive 350 kms without oil in the diff! He called the garage the next morning ( the main Toyota delaership in Harare) and had them shaking in their boots before he finished with our service rep! They kept asking if the engine was ok! He had them drive out immediately with a plug and diff oil to our doctor who was in Chinhoyi, since we couldn't move the car! We got it all cleaned up and ready to go to SA! Amazing! I think we can get a free service for our next visit, don't you?

Last night was movie night and we showed Madagascar 2--they loved it. We now have about 200+ people coming each Friday night for our community movie night. As they walked home I could hear a group of kids singing near the township "you've got to move it, move it!" the song from the movie! It was so fun to hear that drifting through the African bush!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Winter seems to be over

This week it is getting up to the 90's during the days and high 60's at night--so it seems winter is almost over.
It has been a busy week at the hospital. We had 3 outreach clinics in the last week and over 800 patients now on ART! One area that we go to the people are very disappointed if we test them for HIV and they are negative. Their is a foo organization giving food to those with HIV--so they want the food! This leads us to believe some people are seeking HIV in order to get food! Maybe food should be given to all the people who need it.
My visitors bag finally arrive 5 ays after she did! She was very happy to have new clothes to wear!
Lori will be here in 1 week an we look forward to that.