Today was a super busy day! The HARK crew was at Chezi Christian Hospital for today and it was an adventure! We got up early again and left around 6:15 am. When we arrived, they were not really sure where to put us. We had a space for the audio trailer, so we put that down and debated where the rest of the stations should be. They showed us a room- which used to be the isolation room, and it looks promising so we moved all of our stuff down there only to find out they didn’t have any power. So we packed everything back up and moved it back to our original spot. We ended up setting everything up outside with the exception of hearing aid programming which went in a smaller room in a different part of the hospital. That lasted about 30 minutes until the hospital lost power and we had to move hearing aid programming to the HARK and plug the HARK and the audio trailer into the generator.
As a team, we saw over 130 people! Go team! We fit between 10 and 15 hearing aids, and many people received medicine for their ear infections so it was a very successful day. Once we put hearing aids on a few of the older gentlemen, they started smiling and giggling to themselves. It makes all the early mornings and long days 100% worth it. The team worked great together and everyone had a smile on their face at the end of the day. Also at the end of the day, we had a woman with a beetle in her ear! Our ENT (Leonard) removed the beetle and Jessica had Leonard show the woman. To our surprise, she opened her purse, took out a small bag, and put the beetle in it to take home with her! We will be together once more tomorrow in a small group before we all come back together as one large team. If we are powering through 130 people (at each site) with a half team, just imagine what we will accomplish when we are back at full strength! Look out Malawi!
Until next time,
Dear friends and family,
Day 1 of outreach clinic was a huge success! Our team saw a total of 118 patients over the course of the day. We operated out of a community center roughly 40 minutes away from where we are staying in Blantyre. Our team split up into 5 stations, each of which working in a separate room. This location forced us to be creative with out stations, as tables and chairs (other than a few plastic stools) were not available to us. I worked in the wax removal/medical management station. The individuals that I saw were incredibly thankful and patient. One woman in particular laughed with joy after having wax removed from her ears because she could finally hear again! The teammates working in the hearing aid fitting station successfully fit two adults with hearing aids. Despite a few setbacks in the beginning, our clinic flow became much more efficient as the day progressed. We stopped for lunch about halfway through the day, which consisted of rice, greens, fried chicken and soda/water. After the sun set around 6pm, we worked by headlamps to ensure that each and every patient waiting in line received our services. We are so eager to see what tomorrow has in store!
Until next time,
Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital:
Today was our first day of clinic at QECH and it was a busy day! There were about 15 patients lined up for us when we arrived at 8 am this morning! Angie, Kari and Jayce were in the clinic with Dr. Busen. We got to work pretty quickly after we arrived and we worked all day. The time flew by since we were constantly busy, but we got to see some exciting things today. Angie and Kari got to see a kiddo with a spider in her ear! Jayce and Angie saw a patient who had an ear canal that allowed them to see all of the landmarks of the middle ear. Dr. Busen taught Prisca (one of the audiology officers at QECH) more about ABRs, and got to run some click ABRs (auditory brainstem response) and some ASSR (auditory steady state response). These tests were done on young children who are not able to respond behaviorally. It tests the function of the auditory nerve. All of the patients who were tested today had interesting hearing test results, or were young children who are more difficult to test. It was towards the end of the day when we found out why… There is a sign sitting at the front desk stating that any difficult to test patient should be scheduled for when we were in town… suddenly our day all made sense. The best part of the day was being able to complete the whole process of fitting hearing aids starting from the case history all the way through to the patient leaving with their hearing aids. At home, we start with the case history and do a hearing test, but there is usually a few more appointments in between the hearing test and the eventual hearing aid fitting. Here, we were able to complete everything in one appointment. The looks on the patient’s faces who walked out with their new hearing aids was worth all of the hard work! We are looking forward to coming back tomorrow and seeing more patients!
The rest of team went on their first outreach today, and a separate post should be coming from them later tonight! Stay tuned!
We recently hosted a fundraiser at Postino Annex for the 2016 HFH trip to Malawi. The proceeds from the fundraiser are set aside to purchase maize for James Village in Malawi. The event was a huge success and a lot of fun for those who attended. We had a silent auction and raffle – both with many awesome prizes. We are excited to get ready for this year’s trip!