“Typical” ELWA Hospital visits; Typhoid fever looking like appendicitis, malaria causing sore throat, tuberculosis patients with large pericardial effusions (fluid in the sack surrounding the heart), tetanus causing abdominal muscle spasm, and severe leg burns from using “bush medicine” to “treat” a spinal cord injury.
The past 4 months have been an incredible learning experience. I have been working with a wonderful team of doctors, nurses and staff.
At 7:30 am chapel, Pastor Moses begins with a teaching from scripture that relates to our lives and service at ELWA hospital.
After chapel the team starts the morning with sign out from the night before. The doctor who was on call shares about the patients that he or she cared for during the night and the doctors on the team have the opportunity to ask questions and give input into the care.
During rounds we split into 3 teams. One team sees patients on the maternity ward and pediatrics, one team cares for the general medicine patients and the surgeons round on their surgical patients. Each team includes expatriates and African doctors, all of us using our own experience and knowledge to offer insight into some of the more challenging cases.
We have had several teaching conferences in the past two months. I have had the opportunity to present multiple sessions on obstetrical ultrasound to doctors and nurses. Ultrasound is one of the few imaging studies available here and, as many of you know, this skill is one of my favorite things to teach.
I also had the chance to teach vacuum assisted delivery. This is a procedure that has proved to be life saving on a couple of occasions in the past two months here at ELWA hospital. We did not have an obstetrical mannequin, so my family helped me construct a model from a cardboard box, duct tape, West African cloth, and a children’s toy ball. This was quite an enjoyable and interactive session.
I am so grateful for the chance to learn and teach in Liberia. God is using each of us on the team to encourage others, share God’s love, and provide the best care that we are able to the patients that we are privileged to serve.