We finished up the medical clinic and loaded up the cars to go on a mobile mission.
Dolee is a community with whom we have worked for years. We built a school, cereal bank and well. One of the matrones from here was sick and could not attend the recent training so we wanted to visit the community for several reasons.
We arrived late and they greeted us with a dance.
We called the pregnant women first. There were eleven of them. The first was the grandaughter of the matrone and had delivered four children, but hemorrhaged severely after each. She was at high risk of dying in childbirth on her next delivery in about a month. Dr. Skankey explained to her mother the necessary things to do and medications to administer, but advised her to go to the maternity in Ingall. She said she had been there in the last month, but they had told her nothing and given her no medicine or vitamins. We have heard this again and again. It appears the local personnel either lack the resources in medicine and training or the desire to make the effort help these women. The good news is that Ingall has been promised a new doctor and we are hoping to work with him to improve the conditions.
After evaluating eleven pregnant women and seeing several at risk, making references and recommendations, we called a community meeting to ask them about their opinions of the most prevalent health problems and what they are doing themselves to improve their health. We talked about the sources of fevers, diarrhea and malaria and related them to hand washing and protection from mosquitos with nets.
We emphasized the importance of the Nomad Foundation’s goal of putting skills in their own hands to improve their own lives.
After consulting 28 patients on mattresses under the trees, moving to avoid the hot sun and stay in the shade, with Linda keeping order, Louine dispensing medicine, me explaining it and of course Dr. Skankey and Achicha talking to the patients we left for the next camp–totally exhausted.