Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Day 4 - Pasua Health Centre Orientation and a Trip to Town

Unfortunately, I have to report that today started with another cold shower :o(.

After my cold shower and breakfast Sandy, Chioma, Bellinda and I were take across to the other side of town to Pasua Health Centre. Pasua is a small hospital with a women/childrens ward, a mens ward, a maternity ward and an out patients clinic. We met with Tabitha (the director of nursing at Pasua) and she took us on a tour of the clinic. After the tour we met with some local student nurses who are also undertaking a placement at Pasua. They were second year nursing students just like us. We divided ourselves amoungst the local students and they took us on a more thorough tour of the hospital. One of my buddy nurses was named Nazmin. The other had a name that I couldn't pronounce for the life of me. The local students were very friendly and excited to show us around. My two buddy student nurses took me through each of the wards, reading the patients notes as we went while discussing the presenting symptoms, the diagnosis and what drugs had been prescribed and why. I was extremely impressed by the  knowledge and language skills these girls possessed. I have no doubt that their knowledge and enthusiasm for nursing could easily rival that of our Australian student nurses. We also visited the family planning clinic where women come to discuss contraseptive options with the doctor. They do this so they don't get pregnant with anymore babies before they are ready. Birth control is offered to the women free of charge by the United Nations Health Organisation. While at the family planning clinic I gave my first imjection since being here in Africa...I injected the patient using my usual dart-like motion however the needles are very blunt here so rather piecing straight through the skin it hit with quite a bit of resistance before going in. I also found that I needed to push a lot harder to get the needle the whole way in. Then to make it even worse, the syringe does not push in near as smoothly or easily as the ones at home. I think this experience was just as horrible for both me and the patient! On a brighter note my student buddies also took me to the well baby clinic where babies are weighed to ensure they are gaining weight and to visit the Mamas and babies in the maternity ward where I was able to hold the babies and have my photo taken. They were so tiny and cute!

After returning to the house we had lunch. It was not particularly nice so this is where the chocolate biscuits I bought the other day came in handy!

Most of us headed into town after lunch/chocolate biscuits. We went back to my favourite coffee shop - Union Cafe - and I had a chocolate milkshake for 4000 shillings ($2.40 AUD) and I also got 1kg of coffee beans for 15500 shillings ($9.25 AUD). Just like the coffee, the milkshake was very good! A lot of the girls went off to see a local
ady about getting their hair braided so that left Tash, Chioma, Bellinda and I to do our own thing in town. We wanted to find an ATM and visit a local artist but after getting ourselves lost and walking up and down the same street a couple of times we decided to give up. We sat down in front of the local police station and called our taxi to come pick is up. We had been sitting there foe a little while when we heard a commotion coming from down the road. We got up to have a
ook at what was happening only to see a large angry mob moving quickly towards us. Just at that moment our taxi pulled in to pick us up. We ran for the taxi and all scrambled in as quickly as possible. Nondo, the taxi driver, explained that the police had caught a theif and they were escorting him back to the police station. The theif and a male police officer were followed by a female police officer who was fending off the angry mob with a very long stick!

I am off to bed now as I need to be ready to leave here at 7:30am for my first full day of placement. We have not yet been taught how to use the daladalas so tomorrow we will travel by taxi.

I will not be home in time for Christmas boys but I am sure you will have a great time with Dad and Nanny and don't forget that Santa will be visiting so leave ouy some beer and treats. I love you and miss you heaps <3.

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