Although I am now back in Agadez having completed our mission I am now able to post with photos–so here we go from the beginning.
Following in Dr. Bob Skankey’s footsteps is not an easy task—given how beloved he is here and how respected, but Dr. Becky is doing just fine. Here she stands with Mohamed, an old friend who lives here and is the father of our caretaker. Last year he was in very bad shape with heart problems and dangerously high blood pressure. She told him if he did not get to a cardiologist right away he would die. Today he came back to show her the results of his visit He went all the way to Niamey which he did as soon as we left, he is taking his meds and is looking great. He came to thank her for saving his life—she did.
The very next day we were in the midst of training and Rabi was called to the clinic in an emergency. A woman had delivered a baby yesterday and the placenta had not yet delivered. Rabi asked for her help. We were in the middle of a training so she told me (as interpreter for the training) to stay and she left with Rabi for the clinic. Less than an hour later she returned to report mom and baby doing fine. I won’t go into the details of how she dealt with it, but people are now gaining new respect for her skills. When Dr. Bob first arrived — due to the previous lack of medical care and proper nutrition he was able to cure blindness with vitamin A and paralysis with multivitamins — this is the truth. He was thought of as a miracle worker — he was concerned that the expectations here would be too high. Dr. Becky may be in for the same high expectations at this rate.