I finally started volunteering at the hospital this week. I really like it there. It is a Catholic hospital named St. Joseph Hospital after the patron saint of stepfathers (I don't know if that is true, i made that up and I apologize if I offended anyone) several kilometers out of town and has about 50 beds but in July they are opening up a new building and adding 100 beds. About 70% of the patients admitted are admitted for malaria. The first day i made rounds with one of the doctors and took a lot of blood pressures before heading to the operating room to observe an appendectomy. The operating room is semi modern and the surgery went well. It felt good being back in the OR. Reminded me of my days at Southern Surgical in Slidell, LA (thanks Dr. Gosey and family for that great experieince). I did have one moment of concern when the power flickered and the overhead light went out. Hakuna matata, the circulating nurse just grabbed a flashlight and they kept going. Probably my least favorite part of the day was when all the recently circumsiced, preteen, boys showed up to have their bandages replaced. I could have lived without that but whatever. I am shadowing an OBGYN doc, who does everything else too, this week and then working in the lab next week, hanging out with the nurses the following week, and working with the doctors again the last two weeks. It should be a good experience.
Today i made the 30 minute walk from the house to the first dala dala station. Caught a ride into downtown Moshi. Walked 3 blocks to catch the Soweto (where the hospital is) dala dala and waited for a long time for it to fill up with passengers. Rode it to the last stop then walked the last 10 minutes to the hospital. It took me an hour and a half to get there and I made it just in time for the surgery of the day. THey removed several myomas from a womans uterus. The myomas ranged from marble size to tennis ball size. It was pretty amazing. And I got to assist in the surgery...when the power went out today I held the flashlight. The nun/doctor (she is both) who runs the hospital laughed and said "this is what happens in Africa". But the surgery went well.
I have managed to make 3 blog posts and check my email in 1 hour. perhaps i am getting better at this internet cafe thing.