Outside of good medical care I think the biggest mission we have at Kijabe Hospital is medical education. We have some many nursing students, clinical officer interns, medical officer interns, and residents roaming our halls it can make your head spin. There is no way to keep track of everybody. It is such an important part of what we do, training the next generation of doctors and medical workers to provide excellent, thorough, compassionate, and hopefully Christian care to the under-served areas of the world.
I took these from the AIC Kijabe Hospital Facebook page. I think they are good demonstrations of the work going on in the hospital ranging from showing compassion and Christian friendship, caring for the weakest, medical education, and research. Please pray for our hospital as we continue to strive for excellence.
I happen to be looking at a friend’s Instagram feed. He works with a ministry to medical students at Southwestern Medical School. I saw myself on the brochure cover for a conference some of his students are attending. That is me in the white coat working in the ER at Diospi Suyana Hospital in Peru. (It is not that surprising as the conference is hosted by the Christian Health Service Corps, our mission agency.)
Rift Valley Academy sixth graders debated the strengths and merits of Athens or Sparta. I am appreciative of the teachers (including Allison) who invest their lives, experience, and prayers into these students who come from around Africa for a good education while their parents serve God through missions.
The WhatsApp message went out over the hospital group, “We have a desperate need for O negative blood for a postpartum mother!” A patient was being brought in by ambulance with a reported hemoglobin (blood level) of 1.7. That is very low. Normal is around 15. We needed blood urgently. After a few phone calls to some of our special donors, two brave men, one working at Naomi’s village, and the other working at RVA came when asked to give blood to save that young mother’s life. One of the two is an experienced donor, the other definitely had the look of how in the world did I find myself here. (You can guess which is which from the picture.) However they were similar in that they knew that what they were giving was going to save a young girl’s life! Thank you Mark and Robert.
“Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.”
Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?”
The King will reply, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”
Last Tuesday I was working in the Naivasha medical clinic. We were doing some routine cesarean sections when one of them ended up not being as routine as expected. During our second cesarean, after delivering the baby, the uterus of the mother would not contract. This is known as uterine atony, and it can cause maternal hemorrhage leading to death. Our patient began bleeding excessively. We closed the lower uterine incision as this will often help the uterus contract, and I began the steps to control uterine atony including medicines, blood transfusion, intravenous fluids, and massage of the uterus. Nothing worked, so I looped some vertical compression sutures around the uterus to squeeze it down, and then quickly closed the abdominal wound so we could transfer her to the main Kijabe Hospital to possibly do a hysterectomy. This is when the bravery kicked in, because there is nothing scarier than driving with a crazily brave ambulance driver on a Kenyan highway. My heart raced as our driver went head to head in games of chicken with large trucks, buses, and semi-trailers. I could see from my seat in the back through a little window between the patient area and the front driver’s cab as we would approach oncoming traffic with our siren blaring and the horn honking. At the last moment the oncoming traffic would yield, and I would pray that the car following the yielding vehicle would give way as well. I would grab my patients hand and try and put on a good face as I awaited our untimely demise. Eventually we turned off the highway and down the hill toward the hospital, eventually pulling in front of the emergency room door. As I stumbled out, some of my physician friends who were awaiting us to help take care of the patient laughed when they saw my white with fear face. They knew that there is nothing braver than racing down the Kenyan highway in an ambulance! (And in case you wondered, the patient did great, and the bleeding stopped without her needing a hysterectomy!)