West Tennessee Haiti Partnership

Continuing Reflections from Our Team in Haiti–Visiting St. Paul’s, More Medical Challenges

Amy and Allie spent the morning at St Pauls school seeing the 3rd and 4th graders, about 45 patients. Margaret visited with some of the children and teachers and apparently taught them out of the creole/english medical dictionary while they were waiting to see the doctor.
When we returned from our boat trip we found Amy and Allie and Margaret in the pharmacy filling prescriptions from the morning. One man brought me an xray to look at. I had seen his child the day before and he is 1 year old but cannot walk. His legs appeared to be weak and could not bear his weight. I thought the child might have spina bifida and told the man he needed an xray. I expected that he would go to the hospital and see a specialist to get an xray. I never expected him to bring the xray back to me to read! Unfortunately the xray was very poor quality and did not show the spine, just a picture of the chest and abdomen. I tried to explain to the dad that I could not help his son, that he needed to take him to a neurologist in Port au Prince. He was trying really hard to help his son and I felt truly sorry for him. In the US I would have lots of options to evaluate the child, but here it is very difficult.
Later in the afternoon I spent time with Marie Carmel and the St Vincents kids. Kelvin and Lauren and Amy did face painting and I had the kids draw some pictures “for Sienna”. I asked Frenel to sing Bienvenue a Ayiti for me and he did, in his sweet clear boy soprano.

Tonight it is sleeping time again; after my shower I remarked that there’s nothing like feeling cool and clean so you can spray yourself with bug spray and climb under your mosquito net (some bugs do get under the net somehow).
Tomorrow we go to PAP to see St Vincents and JoJo and hopefully some of the other teachers who are meeting there tomorrow, like Pierre Guy and Judith Colas. More tearful reunions.

sent from Haiti by Dr. Susan Nelson
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