First experiences in the new ward (Yele)

on 11 August 2012.

It is Thursday, the 4th day our new ward for inpatient is open. We have only one patient who gets much attention and care of our nursing staff.
Mr Yankuba Sesay (CHO) is running the OPD and I am passing by our neighbours, the NedOil palm oil factory, to arrange for a combined trip to Makeni. While taking to Maria Singo, the manager of NedOil, one of the nursing aid from OPD stands in the door opening: there is an emergency.
I follow her to the OPD. On the bed a body of a young boy, the CHO is assisting his breathing as his own is very irregular. Immediately I ask the nursing aids to assist me putting up an IV canula, fortunately successful. We give him D50% (sterile sugar water) through the iv and quite quickly he start breathing better, more regular. He is still very weak and sick. We start other medication and admit him. (I am so very happy this time I do not have to send him in this condition to another hospital, where they might never reach due to transport/money or family problems).

Also he gets much attention from our nurses and his very concerned father. In the following days he really improves a lot. He starts eating well, all by himself. We can send him home on balance medicine.
Via other locals I hear that people on the way to the hospital had said to turn around, as the boy can not make it up, but the father insisted in coming to the hospital. I know he is happy that he did.
I wish these children were brought earlier, but a child can get sick quite quickly, and for many people a hospital is very far (by foot). This is where Lion Heart Medical Centre will make a difference, as before these people had to travel to Makeni (75km) or Masanga (60km) for a hospital. Then the boy would not have made it.