Tracking Ed Monroe as he travels to Haiti and other exotic(?) places

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Our last night at the FOTCOH clinic

Why did I take that shower before supper? I am sweating as much as when I finished work. Today we served around 200 patients for a total near 2600 patients. No wonder we are all tired. I understand we were unable to see about 16 patients at closing time today. One young man was about to be turned away when he suffered a severe asthma attack and was rushed to the breathing treatment area. I have no concept of time when we quit for lunch. After lunch I had some really great help with inventory and I was able to review it and check out the questions that I had. Most of the questions centered on Dr. Bill’s handwriting. Dr Nelson is here and we think he is in love with one of the volunteers-no names mentioned. The child that Donna and I recently acquired as a sponsor child came to the clinic during inventory and I fell in love with him immediately. He has red curly hair and a very proud papa. Red hair in this population means malnutrition, so I inquired if he had been seen during the clinic. Renel acted as interpreter and told me that the boy was well but I asked Dr. Bill to look him over just in case. He is a fine healthy boy. I gave him s Snoopy with a soccer ball, another soccer ball and a small rubber ball and one of my gliders. I think it was Jane who shot the pictures and I am anxious to see them. I wish I had shaved today for that picture and the further video interview with Dan for us to use to recruit more pharmacists. There is nothing like seeing me at my worst.
This has been a great team to be apart of and sadness abounds among the team as we realize that the experience is about over. -Of course, we still have the adventure of Jacmel airport, the flight in the small planes to the small airport in Port-Au-Prince, the ride in the truck with all of our luggage to PAP airport and the zoo that is PAP airport. We purchased rum in Jacmel today and it is in our checked baggage, We fly into Ft. Lauderdale and I hope to be on the cell phone to my wife as soon as I get my feet on the ground. I have tried to reach her on the VOIP phone but have missed her each time. I am going to post this. You will not have to hear from me till sometime on Saturday when I am back home. Thanks for being my readers. Thanks for all the kind remarks and most especially thanks for the prayers. Bonde Bene Ou! May God bless you!

Thursday morning

It was another night of tossing and turning in bed. I will be glad to get home and rest on our comfortable mattress. Yes, I corrected Marna’s name on the picture blog. Sorry Marna but thanks for catching it. Speaking of Marna, the beautician who practices in Haiti with out a license, I never did explain Marna’s moon and some of you might get the wrong idea. Yes, this the time of the new moon, but that is not it and she defiantly did not moon me or anyone else. She is helping me in the pharmacy and part of our job is to draw pictographs of the rising sun, the noon time sun, the setting sun, and the crescent moon. The joke came when I noticed that she put the moon the opposite way that is displayed on our pre-printed labels and I teased her about it. Yesterday the joke was she shot more people that a certain Marine that we know as we gave a lot of shots of Rocephin to patients. I also spent some time reviewing the importance of reading the label of the medication prior to drawing up the medication as we have the Rocephin in two different concentrations available. All of the nursing students are eager to learn and everyone enjoys the teaching opportunity. I am encouraging all of them to use this experience and the tutors as references when looking for work as we all worked under some extreme conditions and all have had to multi-task, think on our feet, react to sudden changes, and provide that most important gift of our love and our care. Again, I wish to mention how great this team is to be a part of.
Dr. K and I are still fighting and no serious blows have landed yet, just a lot of smiles and laughs. Dr. Edwards has finally come to realize that if I do not understand what he has written, (I’ll let you figure that one out) that I proceed with out consulting him and provide the medication that I think he might have been trying to write. It is late in the day usually when that occurs because 11 AM is late in the day, isn’t it? I told Dr Elsa that I was upset because I had no issues with her yesterday. She misses her daily running here; no one seems to want to go for a run with her. People are starting to pack up, I have inventory sheets to print up and Garron's surgery medications to prepare, and all before breakfast so I’ll spell check this but not check for typos just to keep my readers on their toes. Thanks again, Gayala for the feedback. I’ll try to write after we finish up later today.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Wednesday evening

It is almost 6 PM and I have enjoyed 3 beers to celebrate the last full day. We saw somewhere over 300 but totals not in yet. I did edit out some of my typos but left the evidence. What was I thinking? What was I drinking? That Haitian rum devil got a hold of me again. Ha!
So it is off to the shower with a promise of another early dinner. Hopefully I will not have to work on a computer again tonight. I'm told that Aaron will be happy to pay the bill for getting Marna's running again. She claims that he pays all the bills. Gayala- is that true??
BTW. Thanks for all the comments. I love posting them.

More pictures from Becky Reeser's camera

Thanks Becky!!!
 
Basin Bleu
 
Waterspout
 
Getting water from our reservoir
 
Becky and the lady with breast cancer
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Pictures

 
CAT generator building
 
View from roof
 
Marna and Christala
 
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Wednesday early

I am just back from Son-Son’s bar. We celebrated Sharon’s birthday tonight with a cake, a very brief team meeting, and a walk to Son Son’s for a drink. I came back with the first wave. I do not know why I took a shower after dinner as I am drenched with sweat again. Today we saw 383 patients and I think the number was 336 yesterday. We were still done by 4:30. I want to say thanks to all who come into the pharmacy to help. It is wonderful to have such great helpers. I am thrilled to death! David is not feeling well today. I think his peanut butter diet and lack of water is catching up with him. We are experiencing satellite problems and all of our internet feeds are as slow as or slower than dial up. It is very frustrating for all of us. The VOIP is not working well either. I tried a call today and could not get through.
Also, I have not been able to download the pictures that I promised as the feed from My Space came in garbled and blurry. I will try again later. Today was OCP and condom day at the pharmacy as well as many STD’s. Garron reports that surgery went well except for an anesthesia problem with the last patient. The pharmacy is out of all vitamins and getting very low on dispensing bags. We only have 1 ½ days to go. I’ll need to look into the bags for the September team for sure as well as vitamins. I think I have figures out why we are out. I dispensed an 80 day supply for a 63 day gap. If you count over 1500 patients times 20 that is a lot of product. Prefilling the vermox doses is helpful. We have used all of the 2 and 4 oz bottles for BB Sirop and the iron prep. We have pre-labeled the BB Sirop and the Lugol’s solution. The doe charts for the Ivermectin and Chloroquine are helpful. I wish II had the file with the Griseofulvin doses but my son has been unable to send it to me. We have used all of Preckshot Professional Pharmacy’s Ivermectin and are using the blue veterinarian bottle. The look on the faces of the children tells me that I still do not have enough sugar to mask its taste. I did get involved in a treatment today of a lady with a carotid aneurism. I was able to us Hydralazine to bring down her blood pressure to a much lower level than when she came in. The aneurism is big and pulsating and it would frighten anyone who has seen it. Or nursing students are getting quite an education here in Haiti. They see things here on a regular basis that that they would seldom have the opportunity to see in their training. They are all helping in the pharmacy and we discuss what the drug is, why it is given, what to expect, etc. They are eager to learn and such a great help. And they tease well! I got into a little trouble today with my water gun. A little boy of about 5 years old did not like it when I sprayed his leg. The look on his face almost made me cry, so I put on my clown wig, made him a glider, and got him some candy. I am amazed that those 5 cent gliders and bracelets are still here. I wish I had more time to give them out as I almost always get a beautiful smile. I’m going to signing off now. I have not slept well the past two nights and the crowd is noisy in the dining area so I may opt for the third floor balcony in a chaise lounge. Some of the girls are getting bug bites but I must not be as tasty as they are.
Ow it is 5 AM and the internet is working better. I must laugh at myself, along with every one else about my comments, or is that typos, on ant virus and shit the light. I’m sure there are more as I am not taking enough time to proof read before publishing. If I get this published, I must go to the pharmacy for a video session and it will be before 6 AM. The things I get my self into. I stayed up till 10:30 last night helping Marna and Becky with computer problems

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Early Tuesday

There are lots of things I want to publish but I have to get the medications ready for our surgeon, Garron, by 6:15 AM and it is already 5:45 AM. I will publish as much as I can with this post with a promise of more later. My laptop picked up a virus last night, as did Josh Bradshaw’s. I was glad for the anti (corrected from ant) virus software as it cleared it up with a reboot. The laptop was really running slow, even at shut down so I know something was up.
The crowds Monday morning were tremendous. It was said that the word on the street is that you will get into the clinic with baby in tow. We wondered how so many babies showed up at the gate. With that said, it was a “cute baby” day with sets of twins, children grabbing at me as I passed by, my favorite-the screaming child, accidents on the floor of the pharmacy waiting area, and lots of tears from me when I was least expecting them.
I cannot resist mentioning Marna’s moon. I did find out that she teases well and smiles a lot. Her family should be proud of her. That makes me compliment the young people on this team. They are some of the best that I have ever worked with. This whole team has gelled and there is laughter aplenty, helpers when ever needed, the laundry and dishes are no problems, and live is as good as it can be here with these wonderful team mates. With that said, I must report that Beth and I are fighting and I plan to in the battle, but I fear her battle tactics. It involves her orders and I really think she just wants me to keep on my toes but it gives me the break to go out and ask “What is this for? Why did you order this? I cannot read this!” And then we go round and round. She claims I am killing her! For her fan club, ask her about the ocp.
On Sunday night, really it was early Monday morning; I got up to shut (corrected from shit) off the lights in the kitchen and walked (corrected from waked) in on the girl’s slumber party gab session. They were whispering so I was not (corrected from nit) disturbed by the sounds but rather the light. This morning, when I again got up to douse the light, I had no surprises. Just more to teases them about today.
Garron arrived sometime in the afternoon and saw patients up until he had his surgery schedule filled. Dr Nelson worked with him and I believe there are about 30 people he plans to operate on. Today will be the 13 year old boy. This reminds me it is time to go down and prepare his meds so I’ll write more later today.
Yes, we have a birthday to celebrate today. Sharon is now an older woman!

Early Tuesday

There are lots of things I want to publish but I have to get the medications ready for our surgeon, Garron, by 6:15 AM and it is already 5:45 AM. I will publish as much as I can with this post with a promise of more later. My laptop picked up a virus last night, as did Josh Bradshaw’s. I was glad for the ant virus software as it cleared it up with a reboot. The laptop was really running slow, even at shut down so I know something was up.
The crowds Monday morning were tremendous. It was said that the word on the street is that you will get into the clinic with baby in tow. We wondered how so many babies showed up at the gate. With that said, it was a “cute baby” day with sets of twins, children grabbing at me as I passed by, my favorite-the screaming child, accidents on the floor of the pharmacy waiting area, and lots of tears from me when I was least expecting them.
I cannot resist mentioning Marna’s moon. I did find out that she teases well and smiles a lot. Her family should be proud of her. That makes me compliment the young people on this team. They are some of the best that I have ever worked with. This whole team has gelled and there is laughter aplenty, helpers when ever needed, the laundry and dishes are no problems, and live is as good as it can be here with these wonderful team mates. With that said, I must report that Beth and I are fighting and I plan to in the battle, but I fear her battle tactics. It involves her orders and I really think she just wants me to keep on my toes but it gives me the break to go out and ask “What is this for? Why did you order this? I cannot read this!” And then we go round and round. She claims I am killing her! For her fan club, ask her about the ocp.
On Sunday night, really it was early Monday morning; I got up to shit off the lights in the kitchen and waked in on the girl’s slumber party gab session. They were whispering so I was nit disturbed by the sounds but rather the light. This morning, when I again got up to douse the light, I had no surprises. Just more to teases them about today.
Garron arrived sometime in the afternoon and saw patients up until he had his surgery schedule filled. Dr Nelson worked with him and I believe there are about 30 people he plans to operate on. Today will be the 13 year old boy. This reminds me it is time to go down and prepare his meds so I’ll write more later today.
Yes, we have a birthday to celebrate today. Sharon is now an older woman!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Sunday evening

I have some words on the day while the light is still with us. We had a prayer service early this morning at it went well. Kathy Roehm had sent along some songs that I thought Josh could play. It turns out that Josh does not read music after all. Jon Wagner, who had restrung the guitar with new strings, played “Amazing Grace” and “Just a closer walk with Thee” for the service. CJ, Barb, and Diana did the readings and the responsorial verse. Bruce read the gospel and brought it home for us as we server the Haitian people. Pancakes and bacon for breakfast and most were off to Bassin Blu. We had someone stay behind and require an IV but I have been sworn to silence unless the bribe money reaches an acceptable amount. I have picked on this team mate before and I enjoy teasing h__. Put your thinking caps on to guess whom it is. Ha Ha! I though about taking a nap while they were gone but I was unable to fall asleep so, for the first time since I have been here, I was able to relax and read one of my books. There was one injury from the waterfall and I was asked to apply triple antibiotic ointment to someone’s back. I hate these secrets as much as you do but let’s say I did nit mind the application. While I am into the teasing mode, I have to mention a pediatrician who still hates decimal points and continues to try to sneak in pediatric doses for full grown adults. She claims to just be testing me. I have also been teasing one of my dark haired pharmacy helpers that she often thinks too much-or was that stinks too much. I think it was one or the other.
Our trip to Ti Moulage was an adventure as there was some sort of a festival in Cayes Jacmel as we passed through and the one main street was crowded with people. We had our beach party outside of the place we normally go but that was the only difference. I brought along my backpack so the shoppers, and there were many, could purchase their art, statues, jewelry and rocks. I think CJ spent all that he brought, I had to loan Eric $ 20.00 and Dick and Barb $ 18.00. I spent a total of ZERO. I hope Donna will be pleased. The best bargain I saw were the straw hats at $ 2.00. The tee shirt lady wanted $ 8.00 per shirt and did come down to $ 7.00 but had no takers. We did buy some statues for the upcoming golf outing for FOTCOH. Have yu made your reservation yet? Have you volunteered to help FOTCOH at the golf outing. It is on August 6 at Arrowhead country club amd you can let Mary Hedges (mary123158@aol.com) or leave a message with Larry Shank at 691-4846. We really need your help. This is FOTCOH’s biggest fundraiser and we do need the money. But I need to go back to the beach story. The water temperature was near 85 degrees based on my experience with our 86 degree pool in Illinois, There was a strong undertow so we asked all not to swim out too far. The waves about 100 yards out were still around 4 to 6 foot. The beach wmore crowded with Haitians than I have seen in the past. The funny looking house with the blue concrete filled barrels for pillars has been worked on and all of the cement sacks that were mixed into the flooring were covered up with a new layer of concrete that looks like a product called dryvet in the states but this was gray in color so it may have been cement. The food at the beach was delicious as ever but a few team members, no names mentioned-darn, had queasy stomachs and did not eat. One of those queasy folks just stopped by and told me I could release her name but I am a good boy., right?
One of the most interesting things at the beach was the appearance of two water spouts and the beginnings of a third one. They were part of a cloud formation that appeared to me to be about 5 miles out into the Caribbean and headed westward and not towards us. The first one lasted about 10 minutes and then the second one completed its formation and it lasted about 8 minutes. That attracted the attention of the entire beach population. Everyone agreed that is was unusual. I understand that a waterspout is a precursor of a hurricane so I’ll need to check the weather forecast. Our ride home was the usual bumpy ride through the crowds at Cayes Jacmel. When we arrived at the turn off for our compound, the people in the streets cheered us and that made us feel good. The ride in and out of the compound in the truck and tat tap is an adventure in trying to dodge the vegetation that hits the passengers as we sway back and forth under the trees. To our dismay, we found some of them have thorns. Ouch! So now it is dark and we are trying to stay cool. A shower is in order for me. Poor Sharon rode home in the tap tap directly under my arm pit and there was little I could do but apologize. It is time to go, fill requests for aspirin, steroid cream and triple antibiotic ointment. You would think they would be able to find it themselves. Ha! There are 3 full days and one hectic half day left. I still hope to see our new sponsored child and have spoken to Boyer about it. Wish me luck on that one. I did get some news from my family today and I feel better about that. Keep us in your prayers. We prayed for you today

Sunday morning

Wow, I slept in today as it is almost 6 AM. I did not get my planned nap yesterday so I will try again today while many of the group makes the trip to the waterfall. Saturday was a short day at the clinic and we finished at the pharmacy at 12:30 PM. For those of you keeping track, we treated 142 on our first day, 324 on the second day, 342 on the third day, 293 on the fourth day, and 200 yesterday. That totals 1301. So we have done some good work and, at that pace, should see over 2000. As I feared, we will have to limit the adult vitamins but I expected that. I am not sure that my scoop method works well for those tiny pills. I had extra help again as the time to close drew near and they are more experienced in what goes on , they are swifter and have less questions. The doe chart for the chloroquine liquid saves time, pre-filling the vermox oral syringes saves times, and the pre-printed bag labels are still a blessing. Last night was our trip to Jacmel. The first wave left the compound around 2 PM to shop at the art stores and experience the city. I have been warned NOT to make mention of any purchases of paintings, statues, and jewelry, so in keeping with my promise I will not even begin to have you imagine a US dollar figure that might have boosted the Jacmel economy. For those who have been here, Boyer’s brother Jacky, stopped by yesterday and invited me to come outside the compound gate to look over his selection of paintings, statues, and jewelry. He has about 20 oils and some of them are eye catching. Donna has already warned me not to buy any as we have no where to hang another one. Jacky’s prices were $ 20, $ 40, and $ 60 for the paintings. We will likely see more merchandise for sale this afternoon at Ti Moulage, the beach where we will swim and have our Sunday dinner. I’m not sure what time today we will have our prayer service but I imagine it will be early as they will have to leave for the water fall before 10 AM. Today will be a busy day of rest. Ha
During our meal at Ambians last night, a storm came in from the east. Weather here comes westward off the coast of Africa. I watched the clouds roll in and wondered if and when it would rain. Fortunately it occurred while we were eating. I was sitting in the row closest to the street and felt an occasional spray from the hard rain. The storm had a nice variety of lightning but I did not notice a string wind. There was a limb down in the road on our way home so there must have been some wind. We watched in sadness as the rain washed the garbage down the street and knew that it would soon end up in Jacmel bay. The team has spent enough time together that any and every one is open to be teased at any time. I took some teasing about my pretty pint Jacmel shirt and that was one of the reasons that I brought it along. There continues to be a tease about some undergarments and I would just love to name names but I fear retaliation or Haitian revenge. I’ve told my new pharmacy helpers that I plan to spread the word that they did drugs while in Haiti. Our visit to Ambians was much better that in February. We had the place to ourselves except for a few others during the evening. I did purchase a bottle of Argentine Chardonnay and shared it with any willing takers. I also had a rum punch and a Prestige. Serving the dinners turned out as usual. First the rolls, then 10 minutes later the butter, then 10 minutes later the salad. You begin to see the pattern. When the entrĂ©e was served it came out in shifts and they substituted some plates as they did not have enough of something, but I’ve forgotten just what that was. I had ordered the kabob and it was a good as ever. Luckily the rain stopped and we made it home fairly dry. As we drove down the lane from the main road into the compound we did get sprayed from the wet tree limbs. It’s time for me to help set up the prayer service so I’d better close this and get a move on. Thanks to those who have submitted comments to the blog. The only one I rejected was the one I could not translate but it appeared to be an advertisement or a link to who knows where so it will remain unpublished.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Friday the Thirteenth evening

We were done before 5 PM today thanks to my helpers. They have been great. I did loose one this afternoon as she was really dehydrated but she came back near the end to help us finish up. I do not know the count today buy yesterday it was 342 patients. No wonder I was the first one in bed last night. Even with that I did not sleep well. That was the first night I have not slept well here. I may have been just too tired. Most of the team is at Son-Son’s. I chose to stay here andr\ sit down. So far I have had only two interruptions. One was to help prepare a shot for our miracle baby, Kristala who gets a shot daily for a few more days from her adventure of being born and being dumped. The second was to help Andrita, one of our housekeepers, with her acid stomach. I was asked by someone to reveal more about the squeeze, the lips, and the rash but no money was offered so I’ll hold out for further bids. I did discuss the flying bird with the husband of the person who started the joke and I can now reveal that it was a goose. The rest is up to your imagination. When Sharon had to lie down with her dehydration headache, I was given Becky Reeser to help and she did great. Janet Mai also pitched in, as did John Wagner so we had a great day, with a few laughs and a few squirts of the water gun. Some of the bracelets and gliders from the February mission are still here and I love giving them out when I have time. Boyer made a run to Jacmel today and brought back some wine for me for the weekend. Yeah. I will not be going to the waterfall on Sunday. I’ve been there twice and I’ll take that day off. Today was also a cry day for me when I took the time to play with the children as I constructed and flew the gliders and put the bracelets on the little girls arms. The look of surprise and joy in their eyes sent me crying back to the safety of the pharmacy. We had instances of Haitians writing on their dossiers this clinic and, today, I caught a patient going to two providers. Who, you might ask, was the second provider, and why did the provider not notice that the patient had already been seen? Three guesses, and the first to do not count if you consider the country of origin of this particular provider.
A note here, again, to say a special thank the people at Preckshot Professional Pharmacy for the Ivermectin solution. It is so beneficial. We are in trouble with ace inhibitors and adult vitamins. We will need to revisit that area and also to increase the kids vitamins supply for September. The Kids vitamins with Iron are GREAT. The baby vitamins are wonderful also. Dr Beth wanted something for kids who pee the bed today and will likely bring that issue up at medical advisory. We continue to have men’s complaints about painful urination and need to check on that issue. Many of the people who did not go to Son-Son’s are headed out to the south end of the property known as the rocks. There, after they navigate the sharp and uneven terrain, they will be sprayed by the crashing waves as the wind is from the south and mild. They will all come back wet and smiling. There remains two half days and 3 full days of clinic. Colson Mores brother came in right away to pick up the radio and pictures and came by today o tell me that Colson’s family would be coming in on Wednesday. I HOPE to see our new sponsored child sometime this weekend but I do not know just when that will be. I also tried to call home today on the VOIP line but I ony got the answering machine. It is quiet so I’ll go and enjoy a peaceful shower and maybe a short nap.

Friday the Thirteenth

Friday the 13th

It is a little after 5 AM, and it is nice a quiet and the sun is beginning to light the sky. Last night was Hamburger night and I recalled how that was Chip Moodie’s favorite meal. They got started late cooking them and I don’t know why because no one left for the beach or Son-Son’s. The burgers were well done but tasty anyhow. Our normal bakery is closed so we actually ordered buns in town and they were made for us. I understand that this bakery will only make buns by special order as only the blancs eat the buns. We had over night guests. Now that has happened before when a very sick blanc was brought to the clinic. This time it was a Haitian lady and her friend. Her asthma was so bad when she came in early yesterday. She came in at a time when our generator was down due to a broken belt and we had no power. You may recall that we have power from EDH via the lines from 2PM till 6 AM and then we use a Cat generator for the power. Thankfully, I could hook up her nebulizer to the large tank of Oxygen, and thankfully I remembered to bring along the regulator this time. She stayed here all day with her friend and some team members got up over night to give her treatments, Yes, she did eat with us. I forgot to mention that we had another of my favorite Haitian foods, the beet potato salad. I do not remember it as having the kick of a hit of hot peppers but it did. I also found out that it has quite a bit of garlic. But it is tasty…
As I recall, I was to tell you about the visit from the police. Early in the morning two Haitian police arrived at the clinic as patients. It caused a small stir, as I understand, and they were rushed through the system and the pharmacy line. I was handed their dossiers and got them filled and brought them out to my interpreters. The man with the family smiled, shook my hand, and thanked me in English. So, see, there was no police problem but I may have gotten the attention of team members families who may be reading this.
Our team meeting started after the hamburger feast. There is a pharmacy issue but Dr Bill and I put it off due to the lateness of the meeting and the need to keep checking on our patient. David Coleman was assigned to be the enforcer of the provider benches and that worked out well until he moved out of sight and then the Haitians rushed to the provider benches. It has to be hot for them and there is very little shade in the staging area outside the compound and not a lot more where the providers are sitting. I think we will continue to use an enforcer in that area. One of my interpreters took an extended lunch hour yesterday. Pharmacy was already backed up from a heavy morning load and that put us further behind. I did a quick run outside and could not spot him so this morning will be a lecture time. My pill packing girls have, for the most part, kept us up. I did not need to use team members to package last night. Hooray!
Another tidbit that came out of the team meeting was a comment about our Haitian physician. It seems that two young Haitian women came to triage to be seen. They did not present with any discernable symptoms (chief complaints in our terminology). They, both, insisted that they must see Dr Nelson and no one else. It turns out they wanted to have “a relationship” with the young doctor. When asked about the incident, the doctor told us that he was still learning.
The pill counting machine is officially dead. I asked Dan Hoehne to look at it and the circuits are fried and corroded. So the pharmacy committee will have to address that issue at some point or seek a donation of another machine. Last night, at the team meeting, we were discussing how our patients consistently seem to have elevated blood sugar levels and blood pressure levels due to the fact that they had not taken their medications. They claim that they ran out. Our suspicion remains that they feel that if they come in with the levels regulated by the medicine that they will not be seen nor be given more medications. I am going to suggest to the pharmacy committee that we, somehow, ask them to bring n their medication containers, both the empty ones and the partial ones. That would give us some indication of how the medications are standing up in our packaging and also if they are taking the meds at all. I just do not expect that this will be easy for us.
I’ve had no inquires about the squeeze issue, the lips issue or the rash issue yet so the auction remains open. Today, being Friday the thirteenth, some of the team is going to the voodoo ceremony that the Haitians will put on this evening. I think I’ll pass on that, sit here on the back porch with my Prestige beer, and think about home. Speaking of home, what is the Ray reaction to the cigars?? Let me know, please.
One last joke on myself, not only did I fail to bring along the correct file on my flash drive, and that I have been waiting for my son to go to my home and email it to me, but there is more. Last night, I was looking through some old files on this laptop and came across the file where I had calculated out the dosages for the Chloroquine liquid for children. It is aggravating that I have spent a lot of time, and frustration, calculating each child’s dose when I could have posted the chart and supervised the dispensing. As Dr. Nelson said, ”I am still learning”. Sun’s up, EDH is on, and so is breakfast. Love from Haiti!!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Thursday 5:30 PM

Just a short note as I am happy to sit down. Pharmacy is closed. I had extra help in reducing the line and we were done at 6 PM. However, for anyone who has been here, imagine 10 people in the pharmacy trying to fill orders at the same time. Or, for you h=who have not had the pleasure, picture a 15 x 15 foot room with shelving and then 10 people with trays. Cramped? Noisy? Confusing? I am, however. most grateful for the help. I was really getting tired.
Later this evening or in the morning I will discuss the visit by the Haitian police. I may make mention of Marna's squeeze, Becky's lip, and Sue's rash. Of course, I could hold that information and sell it to the highest bidder.
I did have to remind a provider that she was a medical provider and not a lawyer when it came to shingle. I've encountered some interesting dosing when one forgets a zero here or there or even a tiny, insignificant decimal point. Also today in the pharmacy, I was just about given a flying bird by a provider. I leave that to your imagination.
The news I do want to share concerns a baby that I just saw. She was born Sunday and dropped in a toilet (yes,a latrine). The baby was rescued by the actions of an alert 17 year old. He had seen the pregnant lady and just a little later noticed her leaving and trail a path of blood. The UN assisted, broke into the concrete and lowered a Sri Lankan soldier down to rescue the child. Luckily the toilet was almost brand new and not as gross as you might be imagining. She came last night and tonight for a shot of antibiotic. She was adopted by an American family that has an orphanage here. The baby's name is Kristala and I may not have spelled it correctly but it means, in Kreole, Christ was here!
With that said, it is time for a Prestige or something stronger. I have to stop crying!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Wednesday afternoon

I am outside on the balcony, my favorite place here, enjoying the breeze and blogging. We would have been done today at 5 PM but I stayed to fill the prison order. More on that a little later. First and foremost a note to Donna: I miss you very much-especially today at lunch when Dan served potato soup. Almost made me cry! It’s harder this time for me than in the past trips by myself.
In other news, there was a problem with a certain female physician and her delicate garments. I was advised not to divulge many details as it might even embarrass me! Why is it that I always seem to be around when these incidents happen? Also today, one of my female pill packers was complaining about pain in her rather large breasts. I asked my interpreter for help in determine what she wanted me to do as I could not FULLY understand what she was telling me. After the translation, without further delay, I rushed her to Sara Baysinger’s bench so that I would retain my clean cut image! Ha!
At noon, when we tried to close the door and take a break, we had not one but two instances of people entering the pharmacy after they were told that we had closed and demanding service. The last one, I found out later, had pulled that act at every station in the clinic and we all fell for it. Oh well!
On the medical front, the Phenytoin issue has arisen and will be an issue at the next medical advisory committee. And then there is the prison issue. We were asked to visit the local jail this mission. Dr Bill, Sue, Dick, Eric and Dan H. made the trip. The word is, do not end up in Jacmel jail. It is retched. I filled the medication orders and almost all had worms and malaria. All were given vitamins and iron. There were some strange orders but this is not the vehicle to carry that knowledge. All of the inmates, male and female, are housed in the same area but there is restricted access that keeps the gang rapes in check.
I had addit onal help in the pharmacy today. I asked Sharon to come in and fill orders and she did very well. Dr Elsa also volunteered this afternoon and I had her calculating doses for chloroquine, Ivermectin and vermox. She also was a trooper and excelled in her work. At this moment, there are several people helping me package pills.
I seem to have drawn a crowd at my spot so I will run this through the spell checker and get it published.

Early Wednesday

It is another beautiful morning on the balcony. As I sit on the rocking chair, a nice cool breeze from the North floats over me and the sun will soon jump out of the ocean. I managed to rig up my fan so that it blew cool (?) air over me last night. I propped it on the headboard and aimed it on my body. The fan is tall and somewhat square in shape so it stayed out all night. I realized this morning that I am not hydrating enough as I have slept two nights in a row with out awakening to urinate. So it is more water for me today for sure. Carol and I remind each other to drink but not often enough for me, it seems. There has been nobody being sick so that means health is excellent. That is a good thing.
The fishermen are rowing their boat around the point now. Today there are only two men on board. The waves are crashing on the rocks and there is a constant sound, like a big jet plane passing overhead, coming from the nearby rocks.
Time for some more coffee. It is fluid, isn't it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Tuesday evening

It is now almost 9PM on Tuesday. A quick note about the time, we are on Daylight Savings time this year and so we are on the same time as Illinois. Go figure that one out! So, soon it will be bedtime as 5 AM rolls around quickly.
We are just done with our team meeting and there are no major issues. Ha! No one counted patients today but I have told one and all that it had to be 250 or more based on the work. At one time, there were not 5, not 6 but SEVEN providers sending me patients. No wonder we could never get ahead. We did manage to finish by 5:30 PM and I am very proud of that fact. I am still searching for items and there are boxes stacked on boxes in the store room and the pharmacy so the search is interesting. I’ve managed to find what I’ve been looking for after a period of time on or subsequent searches for the same item. The alphabetical system in the store room has been compromised and that makes it most difficult. The out of place items seem to hide well where they do not belong. The system is very Haitian.
All of my helpers are the same as in the past. My pill packers are as slow as ever and cannot seem to grasp the concept of scooping pills into a measuring device and putting them into the bags. The preprinted labels allow us never to run short of packaged pills at any time and I recommend it highly.
The temperature was in the 80’s today and it was very humid. There was thunder and lightning on the nearby mountains but no rain. It was just muggy. The power went off several times today. It seems a hose on the generator broke. We have generator power from 6 AM till 2 PM and then EDH power from the pole the rest of the time. The only problem was that EDH went out twice in the hottest part of the afternoon which meant no lights on the cloudy day and no fans.
The providers had lots of questions and they are fun and easy to work with, Dr Nelson, the Haitian physician, even came out to help for quite awhile. A note to Mark Purcell- I know now just what you meant when you described working with him.
Lots of patients with scabies, lots of ear infections this time and I wonder why. The kids are not in school so we expected loads of them but just the normal amount so far.
One more note to my family: My jump drive will not open for some reason and the files that I need to transfer to the computer here are locked. Please read my email to you and respond when you can. Thanks.
I am sitting on the balcony where I wrote from this morning and there is a nice cool sea breeze. I am sleeping on the second floor on the other side of the building and there is no breeze in there and it is very warm. By the way, there are no mosquitoes so far. That is a far cry from our last February trip. I do not miss them at all. But I do miss home, a lot!
I think that is enough for tonight. I’m tired and even a warm muggy bed will fell good.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers. Thanks for the emails and comments.

Welcome to Haiti

It’s Tuesday morning at 5:15 AM. The sun will be up in about 30 minutes. I am on the third floor balcony looking out to the Southeast. There is a small boat out on the water with 3 men fishing. The skyline is gray with the morning haze. The small breeze is refreshing and nice. It is probably 15 degrees cooler outside than in side the clinic so it is fun to sit here and watch the sun come up as I type.
On Sunday night at 11PM, I left for the airport. About half way there, I realized that I’d not packed my passport so we turned around and returned home to retrieve it. No matter, our bus did not show up until midnight. It took just a short while to load the bus and we were off on this adventure. The bus ride was uneventful. The DVD of “The Simpson’s” was the movie. I dozed a bit after that as it was hard to doze with the noise. We arrived at O’Hare at 3 AM. There were, already, several people there and a couple of large groups ahead of us in line. When we stated to check in at 4:30 AM we encounter our first problem. American Airlines, with its announced embargo, would not take our tote containers that we had specially purchased in response to that embargo. They told us that totes are, boxes and no boxes are allowed due to the embargo. It took many calls and almost 1 hour before we were allowed to check in. Whew. We managed to get checked in, through TSA security, etc with minimal problems. I had failed to remove my quart sized bag of shave cream so my bags were checked by TSA and I did not loose the product. Fortified by Starbucks coffee, we got on a full flight to Miami and arrived on time at the D concourse. Our next flight, in 3 hours was from the “A” concourse and that meant a 20 minute walk between terminals for our exercise. We ate lunch at the Mexican restaurant and Jane Mai, a second year medical student from Tampa, met up with us. She is a lovely young oriental who, influenced by meeting Dr. Paul Farmer, was inspired to work in Haiti and found out about our team. She is friendly and personable and will be a great asset. On a side note, this team has come together quite well and it will be another fun adventure.
Our plane was late and full leaving Miami. What else is new? When we arrived in Haiti, we cleared immigration in record time and I complimented the agent on the swiftness of the process. That was a mistake as it took more than 1 hour for our plane to be unloaded and, to our joy and surprise, our containers were the last to be unloaded in typical Haitian fashion. Now the process begins of getting your bags and boxes and get through customs. Someone else had my container so I switched with her and faced the music. After I had to show the agent how to open the ties-much to his surprise, he merely pawed through the box, picked up the bag of very powerful injectables, much to my dismay, and promptly put them back neatly and I was on my way. About 8 of us seemed to be targeted for inspection but no seizures and no customs charges. Yeah!. We departed the terminal, into the mob of people and our Haitian helpers guided us to the truck that would take our luggage to Jacmel and also take us to the small airport. We loaded up, like sardines in a can, and raced to the other end of the airfield. It too Carbintair about 45 minutes of Haitian stalling for us to get on the two small planes for our 18 minute flight over the mountains to Jacmel. Dick, Barb, Bruce, Dan, and, of course, Digone met us at the Jacmel end. We loaded our carryon and ourselves into the two trucks for the short trip to the clinic. Jean Michel, Eric and I rode the back bumper and Jean Michele and I chose to walk from the min road back to the clinic as Son Son’s Tap-Tap was dragging bottom as we drove over the rough rocky ground. It was fun to spend that time with Jean Michel, one of our main men, here in Haiti.
The clinic was as clean as ever and the new team members marvel at our luxurious accommodations. I began to uncover the pharmacy and prepare it to open. We ate one of my favorite meals, Thanks to our Haitian cooks, of tomatoes, onions, lobster in a stew, with rice and beans and pickly, the hot Cole slaw. It was a nice welcome. Our main bags arrived at 10 PM and we had them broken down in about a half hour. There was some leakage of shampoos inside the bags and boxes but no real damage that I can see. A quick note to the pharmacy committee that the new light bulb did not solve the problem with the pill counting machine so I will have some one here look at it but I will not count on it for this mission. Soon it will be breakfast and off to work. We give thanks to God for our safe journey here and for the many blessings He bestows on us.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Here in Haiti

We arrived late into Port-Au-Prince but were able to catch the plane to Jacmel so you know we have arrived safely. I am very tired and have been up now almost 45 hours so this will be brief. I just wanted you to know that we got here. I'll write more about our adventures tomorrow when I am rested. Yes it is hot and sticky. I am sweating quite well, thank you. Please know you are in our prayers.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Soon to be off

Tomorrow we will begin the July mission to Haiti. I am excited that I can return to assist the people in the Jacmel area as best that I can. I am hoping to meet up with Brother Nego. He is a youth minister in Jacmel. We've corresponded via email so far.
Our packing party went smooth but my bags are very overweight so I've had to remove some soap. baby blankets, lotions, food, and other items in order to accommodate some last minute medications. I hope we do not have problems at customs!!! Our new tote boxes, in response to American Airlines cargo embargo, do not hold as much bulk and 50 lbs comes very easily. Our weather forecast is for hot and muggy conditions. Please keep us in your prayers as you are in mine.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Pictures from February 2007 Mission






Go to http://picasaweb.google.com/edmonroe316 for more photos.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Team preparation for July Mission

We will soon have our second team meeting for the upcoming July medical mission. We will have a team made up of some first timers and some old timers. It should be a fun trip. Today I heard that the April-May team had some problems with American Airlines and did not get to arrive in Haiti until later than planned. That forced them to spend the night in Port-Au-Prince. They were also expected to arrive in Jacmel late this morning so that will cause them problems today. I'll keep you posted as I hear more.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

I am not tired

I just looked at the title of my previous post. It shows that I am still stuck on Friday rather than on the Wednesday that it is. Sorry!

Friday before we leave


Home, sweet home. We are all home, as far as I know but it was an adventure.
My day started about 3 AM EST when my wife woke me up by telling me she had packed her passport and green exit card in the checked luggage that was already on its way by truck to Port-Au-Prince. After that I just laid on the bed until about 4:45 AM when I hear someone making coffee. It turns out that some of the team had just gotten to bed at 3 AM. I’ve sworn to silence and will not divulge names… After our heart breakfast meal of coffee and a breakfast bar, we loaded into Son-Son’s tap-tap, the Toyota trick, and Boyer’s friend’s pick up for the ride to Jacmel airport. Dionne was there to try to sell us some more souvenirs and to see us off. Dick and Barb came along to say Goodbye. We were surprised that there were several Haitians also waiting on a plane. I did not look at the time but a plane appeared and landed, and was followed shortly thereafter by a second plane. Half of our team got on the first plane and the rest on the second plane. Well, that is not true as one of the Haitian’s decided to take the front seat on our charter and there was no seat for our leader, Eric. He finally gave in and got out of the plane and Eric joined our flight. The flight over the mountains was much higher than last year as we were not loaded down with our checked luggage this year. The sun was out and the sky was clear and it is always an incredible view from the air. We landed in Port-Au-Prince at the “commuter” terminal and then the fun began. The first group was waiting inside and we had to carefully watch for our carry-on's so they would not get stolen. Now begins the parade to the far end of the parking lot to catch our transportation. It was not very far but I had to put the fact that our transportation was parked at the back of the lot...
See picture at the top:

Yes, folks, our own Haitian truck. The nose of the load bed is filled with our entire checked luggage so we have to squeeze 25 team members, Boyer, Jean Michael, and Boyer’s brother, Jacky on board. Some of the first ones in climbed on the bags and boxes and we all managed to ride but it was not a comfortable ride. When we arrived at the International terminal we were greeted by the usual crowd of people hawking souvenirs or “wanting to help us” to earn some money. We unloaded and pushed our bags into the line at the front door. I was able to break the tie down on the case with Donna’s passport and card to leave Haiti and we passed through the confusion into the first security check point. After clearing that, we assembled in our usual pile of luggage and people, but the lobby was filled with hundreds of people. We found out that American Airlines had canceled two flights the day before and many of those folks were there. Also, American’s 9:30 AM flight customers were still in line and had not checked in. Long story short we waited from 8:30AM till around 10:45 AM in line for American to check us in. Our next stop is the departure lounge for our traditional Haitian hot dog. As usual, one of the vendors is out of hot dogs, out of this and out of that. Thankfully there are two food vendors. We met with several groups like ours who were departing. One group was from Colorado, one from New York, and one from Northern Illinois (Carroll County). We visited and exchanged information, stories, and emails with all of the groups. I also spoke with a young man who was returning from Haiti to Washington DC. He and his Haitian wife had been to visit relatives. She was staying on but he had to get back for work. He is from Ethiopia and has plans for a medical mission to his home country. He and I exchanged email addresses. About noon, I sent Donna and Debi down to go through the third security check at the boarding area and I followed as soon as there was someone to watch over some team members luggage besides me. The lounge was full and became quite crowded as the time went on. I was introduced to a pharmacist from Tennessee and his wife who had just finished up their fourth medical mission trip. We shared thoughts, ideas, problems and email addresses so we can continue to learn from each other. Our plane was about ½ hour late in arriving in Haiti so we did not board till ½ hour later than planned. Our trip from PAP to Miami was a smooth ride. Most of us sailed through customs and we were surprised to find our tubs had already been off loaded and available when we reached the baggage claim area. Our next stop was American’s desk to recheck our bags. That is where the problems started for Courtney and Leah Barr. American refused their luggage and told them they had to go to the main ticketing area and recheck the bags and totes there. That caused them to miss our flight to Chicago. Eric and Sue Behrens, our team leaders, stayed behind to assist. I understand they made a later flight. Courtney and Leah made the 1o:30 PM Peoria Charter Coach bus and were at home by 2:30 AM. Eric and Sue chose to spend the night in Chicago and caught the first flight out this morning. In all of the rush and confusion of Miami, we did not get to say Good-Bye to Leigh Behrens and Garron and Sharon Lukas. Darn! Some of the team grabbed some food in Miami. Donna and I had a tasty Latte. Our flight to Chicago was on time and very smooth. Once in Chicago, Donna and I grabbed a salad at the McDonald’s in K concourse and hurried to our gate at G-1-b. We had no time to eat at the gate and got right on the plane to Peoria. We were able to finish our food on the plane before it took off. We arrived to COLD Peoria around 10PM CST. It was a cold trip to the car so we could load our bags. They came along, finally and we loaded the car, said our goodbyes, and drove home. Unfortunately, no one had shoveled the several inches of snow off our inclined driveway so I made two passes to get up the hill and into the garage. All was well at home and we got to bed around midnight. Home sweet Home.
This morning we had a nice email from Papa Dick telling us how quiet the building is without a large team’s presence. I have to tabulate the inventory figures and some other book work so I will bring this to an end for today. Just as soon as I get some pictures from team members who brought along cameras, I will post to this blog.
Thanks to all of you for your prayers and support. Please consider The Friends of The Children of Haiti if you have some money, time, or talent to share. Our website is: www.fotcoh.org. I can personally testify that all of the money you contribute goes for the care, feeding, and education of the Haitians. God Bless!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Monday Night

We have just finished our last team meeting and our last meal together. The Haitian girls treated us to beans and rice, tomatoes-onions-lobster sauce, and very spicy pickle. It was good. We leave for Jacmel aairport at 6:30 AM EST. If you wish to follow our flights go to www.flightaware.com. Our flights are: AA 822 PAP-MIA, AA 1035 MIA-ORD, and AA 4379 ORD-PIA. We HOPE to be home around 10 PM CST. That means a 17 hour trip. We hope to be home safe and sound. I will not be on line till sometime Wednesday so this will be the last post till then. God bless you!

Monday afternoon

Inventory is done. I'll finish tabulating at home but all my questions have been answered. This team is wonderful to work with I had 6 helpers today and we were done by 10:30 AM. That is a record. We have had about 50 more people show up today for treatment and I am not sure how many of those we actually treated. We are busy packing our gear to return home. We are hauling lots of goodies for the golf outing in August in our totes and bags. I think there might be some dirty laundry in there also. Today is cloudy and partially overcast. Garron has just returned fro surgery. Some of the children he was to operate on did not show up. I found out today that I will not be able to see my sponsored child as he is at his mother's funeral. How sad!
I did not get much sleep last night as I worried about my mad response to anonymous. I let it get under my skin and I fired back. That is never a good thing. I am sorry that I offended anonymous but I put in the hours before retiring and I am happy to try to make a difference in some peoples lives rather that sit in front of my TV and never do anything for anyone. I urge Anonymous to come along on a mission trip and see rhe conditions of the people of Haiti, to see the severe medical problems they have, to see that they suffer mostly in silence with what the world has dealt them. Then Anonymous could complain about the average Joe. As for me I have never been an average person. I am more like a crazy, goofy, workaholic, volunteering, caring person. But I like who I am, what I have accomplished, and what I plan to accomplish in the near and far future. So much for average.
We send our bags and crates over;and at 6PM tonight and have a 7AM plane (we hope-but with Haitians you never know) from Jacmel to Port-Au-Prince. Then it will be a hot dog and shopping at Port-Au-Prince airport after the usual confusion of that crazy place. We fly to Miami around 1PM. More lunch (real American food) in Miami and hopefully a 5:50 flight to O'Hare. The a 9:10 flight(again hopefully) to the Greater Peoria airport.After our wait for the luggage, we MAY be home by midnight which is 1 AM on our body clocks. I do not envy Leigh Behrens who flies from Miami to San Francisco. She will be tired when she gets home. The trip is winding down and that is sad. But many of us will be back in July for another mission. I promise to post photos as soon as I get some. Donna and I did not bring a camera on this trip but I am told a CD is forthcoming from someone. Time for a shower and some wine.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Dear Anonymous

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Sometime Friday night":

Read you every day Ed. Appreciate what you guys are doing down there. But I was wondering about your bankers hours comment. Millions of us everyday Joes get up and are AT work every morning before the sun rises and then home after five with out the benefits of your drinks,lobster and beaches. Is our work any less important?

Dear Anonymous,
I did not mean to say that+your work is less important. I was trying to tell those people who think we are on a vacation down here that we do work while we are here and not slack off just because it is hot, or fill of mosquitos, or raining outside, or that the Haitians have stong body odors. I am sorry that I offended you. My purpose in this blog is to assure the folks back home that all is well. Last year, due to political unrest, we were forced to stay in Haiti an extra 5 days before American Airlines resumed flights and that ca=used a lot of worry back home. I do hope you understand.

Sunday night after the Daytona 500

The race is now over and all of the yelling and shouting may be over. The race fans, outside our door, really got into the race and sat in front of the TV from 1PM till 7:30 PM. By the sounds of the shouts, the end of the race was exciting. The group got back from Basin Blu just in time to take off for Ti Moulage. Many of us stayed home to nap, read, watch the race, or just relax. I was enjoying my nap until the start of the race and the sounds from the television. It sounds like the group had a great time at the waterfall and at the beach. There are some really sun burned people tonight calling for the Lidocaine jelly. Donna and Kay are still dealing with tummy problems but they report that they are well this evening. Mary Steiner, Carol Steiner and I walked up to the Jacmel Platz hotel for dinner. We had deep fried fish, pomme frites (French fries),3 crepes, and water for $400.00 Haitian which is about $ 28.00 US for the 3 of us. It was a fun walk on the dirt road and on the main road. The cars, trucks, and motor bikes pass very close to you as you walk and even if you think you are facing traffic a vehicle can pss close by as it attempts to pass 1 or 2 cars at a time. I had a close brush like that on the way home.
I realized today trhat I have failed to mention that we have two great “new” things this time. We have water pressure as Dick has installed an auxillary pump. And even better, there is a hating element in the hot water tank and the showers are warm and sometimes hot. That is very nice.
I want to share a prayer with you that was read at our prayer service today. It was found on the internet at http://snp.homestead.com/PrayerHughes.html if you would care to view it.

A Prayer For the Children
Ina J. Hughes
(an American school teacher)
adapted by James Steyer


We pray for the children
who sneak popsicles before supper,
who erase holes in math workbooks
who throw tantrums in the grocery store and pick at their food,
who like ghost stories,
who can never find their shoes.

We pray for the children
who stare at photographers from behind barbed wire,
who cannot bound down the street in a new pair of sneakers,
who are born in places we wouldn't be caught dead in,
who never go to the circus,
who live in an X-rated world.

We pray for the children
who sleep with the dog and bury the goldfish,
who bring us sticky kisses and fistfulls of dandelions,
who get visits from the tooth fairy,
who hug us in a hurry and forget their lunch money.

We pray for the children
who never get dessert,
who have no safe blanket to drag behind them,
who watch their parents watch them die,
who can't find any bread to steal,
who don't have any rooms to clean up.
whose pictures aren't on anybody's dresser,
whose monsters are real.

We pray for the children
who spend all their allowance before Tuesday,
who shove dirty clothes under the bed and never rinse out the tub,
who don't like to be kissed in front of the carpool,
who squirm in church or temple and scream into the phone,
whose tears we sometimes laugh at and
whose tears sometimes make us cry.

We pray for the children
whose nightmares come in the daytime,
who will eat anything,
who have never seen a dentist,
who aren't spoiled by anybody,
who go to bed hungry and cry themselves to sleep,
and live and move, but have no being.

We pray for the children who want to be carried
and for those who must,
for those we never give up on and
for those who don't get a second chance,
for those we smother...
and those who will grab the hand of anybody kind enough to offer it.

We also listened to the Mass readings for the day and a listened to a reading from Isaiah 58 which I encourage you to read.
I need to get off so that we can get a message from Jeremy and Lori.

Forgot

I wanted to put this on the Sunday morning post and forgot. You might enjoy reading this article. http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/news/world/haiti/16725382.htm
We were there. I was also reminded that we had a Haitian band show up at Cap Lamando and they were good. We listened, danced, and enjoyed. We will also be monitoring today's Daytona 500. There are some race fans here. We also hear there is an NBA game of note today that we hope to catch. Maybe, just maybe, we wil trun on the television.

Early Sunday morning

Bon Jour-Good Morning! Today will be a day of rest for this writer. Many team members will go to Bassin Blu, the waterfall, later this morning. After the waterfall, the next trip is to the beach at T Moulage. As for me, I plan to relax, read, and enjoy a day off with very little to do. It will serve as recovery time as the clinic winds down.
Saturday morning started with a heavy rain storm just about 7:30 AM. The rain lasted about 45 minutes and it made the day even more humid. It also made for more mud, dirt, rocks, and other landscape materials to be tracked into the clinic. One of the ironies is that the Haitians often take off their shoes outside the door and soon there is several pair outside that everyone must maneuver past to enter or exit. Haitians are, by culture, afraid of the rain. We had some canopies outside the compound and a tarp over the triage area for shelter. The providers are located on a portico with a new cement floor so they were relatively dry.
After the rain, with the limited amount of soil, there was very little mud. This area has very little top soil. I was remarking to Chip Moodie, who farms near Bradford, Illinois, about soil quality. We both agreed that the soil near Bassin Blu seemed very rich and we observed a planting of beans as we walked to the waterfall. There is an area on the way to Jacmel from Cyvadier that we pass that appears to be a crop raising area. Ooops, I’ve let my mind wander to another area instead of finishing my description of Saturday. We ended the day having seen160 patients. That brings our total to 2607 for the mission. Garron Lukas, our surgeon, performed 17 surgeries during this mission. He was only able to perform one on Saturday as the lady who was supposed to have a breast removed did not show up for the surgery. There is always a last minute demand by our Haitian helpers to have some family member seen on the last day, or to come up with some medical problem that day so that they can get some Motrin, or vitamins, or Tylenol, or some other medication. It takes me a long time, on the last day, to exit the pharmacy. The last day is also a hard day in the pharmacy as we do not want to package more that we need for the day as we will have to take it out of the packages for storage between clinics. So it is packaging in small lots for the pill packer which is hurry up and wait situation. I am so grateful for the work of Carol Steiner in the pharmacy again this year. She is a hard worker, never complains, works with a smile on her face, is very careful with her filling of orders, and a great blessing to me. I found out on Saturday that she will return with me on the July mission. HOORAY! I also want to acknowledge James Bender. He came in from triage, after it calmed down, and helped fill orders so we could keep our pharmacy bench cleared. He could also administer the injections as they came through pharmacy so that I did not have to chase down a nurse to give the injection. I was also assisted by Leah Barr. She took a heavy load of stress off my shoulders by keeping the pill packers at work. She shouldered the stress well and we were never completely out of stock of any medications in packages. Out of stock meds, packaged in a hurry, is a bad situation and we avoided it. We did have some advancement this year in the pharmacy that I want to brag about. I purchased plastic dropper bottles for the Lugol’s solution. In the past we have used empty bulk pill containers. They had poor seals and no dropper to use to dispense the medication properly. The plastic dropper bottles worked out very well for that and some other situations where a dropper bottle as needed. Speaking of Lugol’s solution, I had one of my translators, Edzer, write out the directions for the use of Lugol’s in Kreole. I then took that and put it on a Microsoft Word file and now we can preprint the labels for the Lugol’s. We have some the same for the baby vitamin formula and, my favorite item, BB Sirop. BB Sirop is a Haitian cough and cold liquid preparation. It comes in gallon bottles. It smells funny and is take with coffee by the patients, kids and adults alike. This year I purchased 2 oz and4 oz amber graduated Rx bottles to dispense liquids in a tight sealed container. In years past, the medication would leak out of the bottles if they were not held upright and I hated that. How could the bottle remain upright as the Haitians walked home from the clinic? It was most likely to spill. So I am pleased with the purchase. Also, I am happy to report that we JUST made it with the Ivermectin medication for scabies. We have less that 2 oz left of the 3 pints we started with. At 10 AM on Saturday, I began to ration it so that we could treat the worst cases. That meant that we would be painting adults with Lindane. We wanted to avoid, if at all possible, painting the small children with the Lindane and we did not have to paint them.
We all noticed that the rain and humidity caused a great increase in body odors from the Haitians on Saturday. It was, for me at least, the first time this clinic that the odor was present as I worked with the Haitians. We did run out of soap to pass out to the Haitians. I do not know how much we brought along but it is all gone. We had more orders for selenium sulfide (Selsun or Head and Shoulders) shampoos. We will have to restock more heavily in future clinics. The only medications we completely ran out of were Methyldopa (Aldomet) for blood pressure control, Phenytoin (Dilantin) for seizure control, and Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) for allergies. That is not too bad for all the patients we see but I hate it none the less. We will pick up a small amount of Methyldopa and Phenytoin from a supplier in Port-Au-Prince who may or may not have some in stock. You can bet that I will lobby for more for the April and July upcoming clinic.
After the clinic on Saturday, we trucked to Cap Lamando. It seemed to take forever to get on the trucks for the trip. Then, as we started down the main road in the second truck, the first truck stopped and turned around for no apparent reason. We stopped and moved the truck to the limited shade at the wrong side of the road. Using the Haitian cell phones, we found out that someone (best left unnamed) had lost cigars off the back of the truck and needed to attempt recovery of same cigars. I hear we, in the second truck, had only crushed one of them as we passed over them on the rough rocky road. At Cap Lamando hotel, we had the pool to ourselves for the most part. There was one family from Appleton Wisconsin there. The husband was Haitian from Jacmel, who had gone to school in the USA and continued to live in Wisconsin. The wife had met him when he was stationed in Wisconsin. They were in Jacmel for Karnaval with their two children and were enjoying a day at the pool. The hotel is much busier again this year as the presence of the UN has caused an increase in room nights. Donna and I ordered a bottle of Chardonnay wine. It cost, with taxes-new to me this year- $12.00 American. It was served by my “old” friend Jean Chadony. On my first visit to Haiti, Jean Chadony was a bus boy. He and I worked together at the hotel setting up tables, table cloths, plates, silverware, and drink glasses so we could have our meal. We had a good time, that night, laughing and working together. He is now the head barman and I got to catch up on him and his growing family. I used to hear from him by email but he has been too busy lately to write. The wine was Australian and a dark yellow color but a nice taste. When Jane Gray went to order another bottle, we found out that I had purchased the only one. She selected a French Sauvignon Blanc and it was also tasty. Many, many Rum Punches, Prestige beers, and ???? Later, the team sat down for our meal. It was the usual Haitian confusion central getting the correct meal to the correct person. Donna and I got ours early on. I think the goat was the last to be served. After we finished the meal, they served pomme fries (French fries) which are tasty, then they brought out a serving of white rice. By that time, many were too full to enjoy the rice. After the meal, there was a swimming pool challenge among the team members. For the sake of confidentiality, I will not name names, at this point. I am, however, open to bribes.
All had a good time and we waited-and waited-and waited for the check. Again, this is very Haitian. When it came, the hotel staff could not agreed on the total. We paid one amount shown on the bill, and one hotel employee, the front desk clerk, argued and argued with the rest of the hotel staff about something or other. We were loaded in the trucks, ready to go, but our driver would not proceed until was give the word from Boyer, our interpreter. This driver is Boyer’s friend and has driven us around the entire mission. I went in to get Boyer. He was in the middle of the argument. The catering manager, with whom I had spoken to earlier, came out with an arm full of Cap Lamando tee shirts for the team. Finally we left and returned to the clinic. It was sometime around 9 PM and the streets were still full of people coming and going. The vehicles all dive with their bright lights on and will only go to low beam about 10 yards from the oncoming vehicle. Traveling on the roads in Haiti is always an adventure. There are people walking along side the road day and night. There are vehicles, parked along the sides and stripped of any and all useful parts, there are motorbikes that either fly around you or slowly put-put along. If you are in a slower moving vehicle, you are passed by a speedier vehicle, no matter what may be on the road ahead. The Haitians use their vehicle horns, so you do have some idea what is happening, but near miss opportunities abound. So far, we have been safe and sound..
The sun is now up, most of the team awake, and soon we will have our prayer service. No one looks the worse for wear from last night and I’ve written more that you may care to read so I’ll TRY to correct some of the many grammar and typographical errors and get this published. Oh, I almost forgot, we are aware of the additional 4 inches of snow that Peoria received on Saturday. We are still watching the forecast for our Tuesday travels. The 45 degrees that is forecast sounds cold to us but better than below zero. Again, it is Sunday, so relax and enjoy the day. Our thoughts and prayers are for you and with you.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Sometime Friday night

Dinner is finished and it was another first for the February team. We enjoyed Hamburgers on the charcoal grill. Sue and Eric brought the meat. Garron and Sharon transported the charcoal. Larry got the buns from Tina’s bakery here in Cyvadier. Chip dug the pit and grilled the meat with Courtney’s help. And it a great meal was had by all. James is setting up the movie and it is Girl’s night and I’ve already forgotten what is supposed to be playing. There is a “gaggle of girls” outside the door trading girl stories. There is a lot of activity around me near the computer center on the third floor. It is about 14 degrees hotter on third floor than on second. The air conditioner is running on third and all of the hot air, me included, is on the third floor.
I need to correct a misstatement form a previous post. I said that Jeremy and Lori had made to Peoria. That is not right. I have since found out that they stopped in Alton, Illinois which is where they are from. Jeremy apparently went to the ER there and was admitted to the hospital in Alton. We do not have any update as of this moment, on how they are doing.
Today we saw 346 patients today, 305 on Thursday, 278 on Wednesday, 280 on Tuesday, and 347 on Monday. That puts us at about 2500 patients so far. Tomorrow is a half day and I expect that we will see nearly 200 on our last clinic day. Everyone is holding up well and their high spirits makes it even more fun for all. I know all of us are tired and have to concentrate even harder as we work. I drug out the pony tailed hat and clown nose today, The foam nose is hot as is the clown wig so it does not stay on very long but it does bring smiles to the children. We did have a little girl yesterday who had never seen a “blanch” as we are called by the Haitians. The girl cried and screamed whenever on of us came near her. I had to make two trips past her as she sat in the lab line which is outside the pharmacy storeroom and the second trip was very hard for me to make as I knew she was so frightened. Fortunately, she has calmed down by the time she got through treatment and provider areas and came into the pharmacy. Saturday afternoon we will be going to Cap Lamando hotel for swimming and dining. Sunday we will have our prayer service, afterwards some will go to Bassin Blu. After they return there is another trip planned to the beach at Ti Moulage. Monday will be inventory day and packing day. Our main bags will be trucked to Port-Au-Prince around 5 PM on Monday so we will not have an overloaded plane ride from Jacmel to Port-Au-Prince like we did last year. As I recall we used all of the Jacmel runway and more to get off the ground on that trip and flew near some of the mountain folks kitchen windows as we passed by-not over-their huts. It was quite a ride.
Thanks to Piper for the winning bid on my auction to tell who has been sick. She not only won the bid but gets the news that her mother is as healthy as ever. A note to our family members and friends who are reading this blog: Thanks for all of your prayers and support. We really do miss you very much and are anxious to return home. The work that we do here is really important to the people of this area and they greatly appreciate what we are doing. It is not a vacation on this tropical island and every one of the team works hard, plays hard, laughs a lot, cries when they hear or see a sad occasion or event, and feel like they have really made a difference in peoples lives at the end of the day. It is not easy to get up every morning at sunrise and get to work by 7:30 AM at the latest. The day usually ends somewhere around 5 PM each evening so it is also not your “banker’s hours.” But you, dear ones, are never far from our minds. With that, I’ll publish this, get my shower taken, and crash for the night. God bless you all…

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Nearing the end

Today is Thursday and we have 1 full clinic day and one half day of clinic. We saw about 300 + patients today. The final numbers are not in yet and yesterday it was somewhere around 275. Garron and Bart at still at thehspital in surgery. Yesterday went slow for them due to lack of bed space at Dr Martinez’s hospital and the Haitian helpers’ doing their jobs in the Haitian way rather than the way Garron and Bart would like to have the job done. Our two team mates are now safely home so I can report that Jeremy Ufert and his wife, Lori Fulk flew home yesterday and made it all the way to Peoria. I do not know very many details except that Jeremy was a very sick person and we are all relieved that he is safe and well cared for in Peoria. I am considering holding an auction for the names of the other team members who are not at the top of their game. I wonder how much that would bring in from you, my faithful readers, or from team members when I announce it at tonight’s team meeting. It sounds like a fun idea to try.
Most of the team is on their way to Son Son’s bar for refreshments. That will mean a late supper tonight. Some of the team went to the secret beach this afternoon. No, I do not know where it is for sure, but I hear it is close by. Chef Larry has prepared excellent meals for the team. With his breakfast oatmeal, we should all lower our cholesterol levels by 30 or more points. It would not hurt yours truly to loose a few pounds while he is here but I doubt that it will happen. I am sitting here with a nice glass of French Sauvignon Blanc wine and watching the sunset over the mountains. We had a hard rain last night and we had a lot of laundry on the lines but it dried early in the morning. The rain forced a cancellation of another movie night.
On the pharmacy side, we have run out of Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) 25 mg, phenytion ( Dilantin), and methyldopa ( Aldomet). We have tapped into the ferrous fumarate syrup (yucky smelling iron liquid). My interpreters have made labels for the Lugol’s solution. I purchased 2 oz dropper bottles for that item and that is a blessing. I am also using the 3 and 4 oz Rx bottles for liquids and there is less leakage. It will be close on the Ivermectin and there is not enough time to get another delovert from Preckshot Pharmacy in Peoria Heights. That reminds me to ask a favor of you, dear reader. I would really like it if you would call Preckshot Pharmacy and thank them for the support that they give us with the Ivermectin and also call Bogard’s Drug Store on Western in Peoria and thank them for helping us to get some needed supplies at a very good price. Without their help, our trip would have been much less of a success.
Weekend plans call for a trip to the Cap Lamando hotel on Saturday afternoon for a swim and dinner on the patio. Sunday some of the team will go to Bassin Blu in the early afternoon. Later on Sunday the plan is for another trip tp the beach at To Moulage. I am sitting here near the main computer area and the wireless network is busy with 3 or 4 laptops going during much of our free time. We sometimes encounter satellite problems due to the clouds but generally we can get on line easily. The thick walls limit the range of my wireless card. My new card that I purchased for this trip has failed so I am glad that I brought along the old spare card.
Donna has just brought me another glass of wine so I’ll close this before it catches up with me. One last note: I would enjoy hear from you if you are enjoying or hating this blog.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Tuesday sometimes during the day

It is noon and I broke for lunch and a little sit down time. It was a long night last night. We had one very sick team member that we were trying to get flown out to Miami. We worked on medications and travel plans till after 11:30 PM. We were up at 5:30 AM as usual. We did manage to send him, along with another team member by small plane (Missionary Air) to the main terminal at Port-Au-Prince and he should be landing now. We hope for a report soon and I will keep you posted. Garron and Bart did a few surgeries yesterday and will be doing several more tomorrow. They were quite late in returning last night and that was a worry. So the whole team is tired today and a little on edge. Lots of Valentine’s day jokes flying around. Twp cases out of four cases of the shipment of medications that I sent on January 29 arrived today. I had predicted that it would arrive today so I was half way right. Cell phones are in abundance here with Digicel building new towers and having a cheap introductory program so many Haitians have cell phone (that even work this year). As with all cell phones, it rings at the worst times in the waiting areas or as the employees are working. We have lost the satellite connection again so I will close down and try again later. It is now 5 PM and the pharmacy is closed. I do find that amazing for as busy as we were again today. We are starting to run out of some medications such as methyldopa and phenytoin. That makes more work for us to find some substitute or tell the patient we do not have the med. There is an attack of what I will call the puney’s within the team but just a minor inconvenience. We still have not heard from the folks we sent to Miami and we are hoping to hear real soon. Much of the team is off to the beach and later on Lobster Man is bringing a fresh catch for us. Chef Larry has a Valentine’s day surprise for the team. There were less screaming children today and several brave souls ventured into the pharmacy. One little girl named Nancy was carried by many of the team members and was almost considered the team mascot. We had lots of babies with skin infections, scabies, worms, fungus, and malaria. That means lots of dose calculations for me. We now have in Kreole the baby vitamin label and the Lugol’s solution label. Next step is the BB sirop label. I think that will be a wrap from this end for today.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Tuesday night

Before I forget it-"Happy Valentine's Day" to all of our loved ones. We do miss you very much.
Today we saw 266 patients. Garron went into town for his surgery patients and we have some of the team under the weather but I have promised to not name names for the sake of peace and harmony. This to shall pass....
Our patient count so far is 125 on Wednesday, 269 on Thursday, 334 on Friday, 173 on Saturday, and 347 on Monday. I am happy to report that the pharmacy was finished today at 4:15 and on Monday at 5 PM. That is amazing. I have such great help from Carol Steiner, Leah Barr, and James Bender along with Roger, Belany, and Edzer out front. I am having a problem with my 3 pill packers. I audited their counts and found major discrepancies with what should be in the bags-all on the low side rather than the high side. No wonder the patients have reported being out of meds between clinics. We are now random counting as many loots as we have the time to do. It is discouraging and very hard to communicate with the girls when we do not know Kreole and are forced to use a third party. This to shall pass.
I hope you are not too mad at our snow scene on the most recent blog. It has been the talk of the team all day and we are worried about you.

Snow


There is no word for snow in Kreole. This is the view outside. We are looking at pictures from Peoria at the weather you are having. It is windy here also and my female pill packers were cold all day today. It was 91 degrees F here. More later.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Computers

With all of the laptops here, there is some one on their computer most of the free time. There are two of us that you can always count on to be typing away. One of them is the person that I neglected to list when I described the team. And how could I forget anonymous? No her name is Leigh Behrens and she is the sister of Eric Behrens. She is again doing a fabulous job in wound care, scabies treatments, laundry, and any other job that comes along. And the best part is that it is always done with a smile that brightens up even a sunny Day like today. I am so sorry that I forgot you. I'll share some more of my wine with you if that will help!

Monday at 6 PM

Monday evening
I still admit to being tired this morning. The night went by too fast and here it is almost time for work. We start again at 7:30 AM. Our Sunday started off with a prayer service. During that service, Garron spoke about courage. He told us how courageous the Haitian people are. He described a Haitian woman who passed through the clinic. She had a mass or growth on her head. It was covered with fleas and flies. She kept it covered with a babushka. She has been to many doctors and tried many things and wondered if we could do anything to help her. But whether we could help her or not, she accepted her condition as it was and would go on with her life. This is so much different from the people in America. We would be angry, depressed, and so on. The Haitians, however, accept the fate that has been put before them and move on. It again shows me that we have entirely too much stuff and are many times unhappy because we do have so much stuff. The Gospel for the prayer service was on the Beatitudes and focused our minds on the mission we are here for. Courage, I pray that we all have the courage to face what life brings us.
After a great breakfast of pancakes and bacon, we took off for Bassin Blu. No, that is not a spelling error but how it is spelled here. Bassin Blue is the beautiful waterfall that is WNW of Jacmel. The trip was an adventure in itself. Jacmel is filled with thousands of people who are in town for national Karnaval. The UN and Haitian police are out in force and the traffic is more than twice the traffic I have seen over the years. When we arrived into Jacmel on the main road we were diverted to a side street and tried to find a way around the crowds. The streets were filled with people, cars, trucks, motorbikes and you were lucky to make a lane to pass through. At one point we encountered a line of cars coming towards us and neither had any place to go due to the narrow passage and the stream of people passing around us. A heated argument ensued between our main man, Boyer, and the several men in the other vehicle. After a while, a Haitian policeman appeared and helped us to back up to allow the other vehicles to proceed and we were off through the crowd. We drove down a very rough and dirty street and finally reached the road leading WNW that we were trying to get to. We took a sharp left and drove on a dirt trail towards the river. This is where I saw the large truck get stuck last year and I expected to see it still there, stripped if all useful items and abandoned. I am happy to report that I am wrong. It must have gotten out of the large hole it had fallen into. So it is over the river, passing the men and women bathing and doing laundry. Yes, there were some x-rated scenes. We forded the river and continued on the dirt road a ways. Boyer stopped and engaged the hubs for our 4 wheel drive up the mountains. There are no street signs and we took a fork in the road at an unmarked corner and climbed up the very steep gravel strewn road. We climbed up and up, slowly easing over washed out areas and avoiding the people and animals who passed by on the road. We passed many huts and partially completed buildings. The small children would wave then hold out their hands for something from us. Near the top we stopped for a picture moment. The view was the city of Jacmel and the Jacmel bay. You could see the roads, the harbor area with the light blue colors followed by the darker blue of the deeper water. It was easy to pick out the abandoned ship in the harbor and the Cap Lamandou hotel and other landmarks. When we arrived at Bassin Bleu there were several cars so we knew that we would not have the place to ourselves. We parked the car and Boyer engaged our Haitian helpers and we were off on a 15 minute (I think-I did not wear my watch) on a trail that led up and down the hills and over the slippery rocks. When we got to one point we encountered a group from the state of Oregon who were heading back from the falls. They are working in Port-Au-Prince on a physical therapy mission. Arriving at the falls, we encountered several men who were finishing off their rum bottles. Yes, we had to climb down the rock using the rope and cross the slippery rocks and ford the stream to reach the large rock where we stowed the small amount of gear that we brought and dove into the water. Everyone warned you to hold your nose as you dove into the water. The current was stronger than I remembered and it was a hard swim. Donna, and several others, swam to the falls and climbed to the first opening. Then they dove into the water. One young man had climbed higher and threw his cap out and dove after it into the pool. Then it was time to leave. Everyone had a good time and hated to leave. Both Donna and I took a fall. Donna is okay but I scarped my shins on the wet, slippery rocks and discovered that they were as sharp as I had heard that they were. No major broken skin and Neosporin will heal it soon. Our return trip was so easy that all of us were surprised at how we got through town with relative ease.
We had about 1 hour at the clinic before we left for Ambians and national Karnaval. The streets were jammed with people and we had to form a line to get to Ambians. We were pushed and shoved as the mob of people swirled around us. At Ambians, all of the prime positions overlooking the street were filled with Haitians, a group of young people from France, a DJ and his sound equipment from a local radio station. We stood behind them and looked out at the parades as it passed by. The bar was as difficult as ever as they are very slow and never know how to make change even in their own currency. It is a sad situation for sure. We were supposed to eat at 5 PM and our dinners arrived at 7:30 PM and were messed up as usual even though we ordered two days before. Then we waited over 1 hour for the check. When we tried to leave, we again formed a chain and scooted across the street in spite of the parade. Now the search was on to find Son-Son and our Tap tap and the other truck. We walked several blocks through the crowds and there was Son Son but not the second truck. It arrived a few minutes later and we rode home through more crowds of people. It was about 9:30 when we got back. After a shower, I was ready for bed and too tired to write. Sorry! I know some of my readers were waiting to hear about our adventure. I started on this at 6 AM and finally finished at 6 PM.
Note to anonymous: Your comment said that I missed someone and at a quick review I do not see it. How about a little more of a clue.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Saturday night 7:30 PM

Saturday night 7:30 PM
We have just returned from the beach. It took 3 pick up trucks to transport all of us and our coolers. We encountered no problems along the way but there was a lot of traffic in the town of Cayes Jacmel when we passed through. It was market day and the market was full of people, produce, clothing, auto parts, and who knows (or really wants me to describe) what else. Let’s just say the smell was “unpleasant.” When we arrived at the beach, we noticed the continuing improvement of the place that we spend the afternoon. It is really coming along nicely and may be done by 2010 or so. The second floor is complete on the outside and a new wall and gate entrance is done. The stone work on the front must have taken days to chip the stones and cement into place. The restroom is till very primitive. The food consisted of a very small portion of lobster, some grilled white fish that was tasty, pickle, fried plantains, and beans and rice. We brought along Prestige and rum punch and a little soda pop. No one was lost to the sharks. We managed to help the economy with our purchases of art works and hats. Donna and I rode back in the first truck so that we could get our showers out of the way. Jane Gray had arranged with Lobtser man, Emil, to have a lobster roast here a short while ago and it was delicious. It was freshly caught spiny lobster and cooked before our eyes on a charcoal fire. Add a little lime juice from a fresh picked lime and there you have a Haitian treat.
On this shortened weekday, we managed to see 173 patients. Fortunately, we were able to be done by noon and are caught up on our packaging. I am pleased with the work flow. I did get an email from Mark Purcell with a copy of the next MAP European drug order. I will review it tomorrow and let him know if it needs to be adjusted due to products we have here and products which are slow moving this clinic.
I was just told to stop for a short break to celebrate James Bender’s 35th birthday. So I will be back to this later. I’ll go ahead and publish this much now. Or then again, maybe not, as others are complaining about slow internet and now a message that the satellite is not working.
I thought I would list the team members and what they are doing here at the clinic. Our hosts are Dick and Barb Hammond. Dick does it all here at the clinic. Barb handles all patient dossiers at triage, helps our chef in the kitchen, and watches over our two Haitian helpers. Courtney Barr is working crowd control. His wife, Leah Barr, is helping me in the pharmacy, doing fluoride treatments for dental, and helping out at scabies treatment. Eric Behrens is our team leader, His wife, Sue Behrens, is a nurse provider, assistant team leader, etc. James Bender works in triage and helps me in the pharmacy. Joshua Bradshaw is in triage. Dr. David Cross is a pediatrician provider and also sees adults as time permits. Keri Edwards is helping lab and dental and records filing. Her husband, Dr. Bill Edwards is another pediatrician who is seeing adults. Lori Fulk is our dentist. Jane Gray is doing crowd control. Mary Hedges is working in triage. Her daughter, Lucy, is doing fluoride treatments and scabies treatments. Dr. Garron Lukas is our surgeon. His wife, Sharon, is a nurse provider. My wife, Donna is working in the lab and helping with dental and records filing. I work in the pharmacy. Ralph ‘Chip’ Moodie is helping in crowd control. His wife, Jody, is a nurse provider. Kay Shank is another nurse provider. Her husband, Larry, is our chef. We will be joined next week by Bart Shields. He will work with Garron as a nurse anesthetist. Carol Steiner helps me out in the pharmacy. Her twin sister, Mary Steiner, is our dental assistant. Dr. Jeremy Ufert, Lori Fulk’s husband, is another physician provider. Debi Yandell is last but not least and is a nurse provider. I hope that I have not overlooked any one. For my pharmacist members, I am still trying to find out when Pepto Bismol was added to our formulary. I do have multiple requests from our female providers for Milk Of Magnesia. I am told it may be a personal request so I was able to serve it today at lunch on a prn basis. The report is that it is beginning to work.
Thanks to all of the folks who are writing comments to the blog and I have published them as I get them. Some of the team members are chiding me that they have to read the blog to see what is going on at the clinic. I hope to get some pictures from team members to post here. Donna and I did not even bring a camera on this trip but there are plenty around the clinic. This is a long blog so I will try to get on line, weather permitting, and publish this. Thanks again for your prayers and support.