Haiti: Days 1 and 2
We arrived in PAP on Saturday afternoon. After gathering all of our supplies, we piled into our van and headed to the hospital. Upon arrival, there were already 4 or 5 ladies with newborn babies with clefts waiting for us. We unpacked the supplies and headed up the mountain to the home we are staying at. Passing through the main area of PAP was as expected… Tons of tents, rubble in street, and just so many people. Next we passed through petionville, and finally up the mountain to Fermathe. We are staying at the home of a Haitian couple, Nadia and Lance Durban. We had a very homemade dinner.
Today we woke up and realized the beauty of where we are staying. The view is gorgeous and there are avocado trees and wild orchids growing off trees. Very peaceful and quiet.
At 8 am we went down to the hospital for patient screening and prepping the ORs. There are also two inpatient areas, in addition to the ORs and recoveery rooms. About 50 patients were waiting… Mostly with cleft lips. The screening took the entire morning. Patients had traveled from over 5 hours away. One little girl had on a white party dress with white eyelet socks and dress shoes. Adorable. We had to say no to a few patients, mostly patients with vascular malformations, for which we did not have the right treatments. We will definitely bring some sclerosing agents on the next trip. The other patients that we couldn’t offer treatment for were those that were too small- younger than 9 mo or 20 lbs.
Things began to wind down and we were gathering our belongings, when we noticed that a bench we had been sitting on 10 minutes earlier was now occupied by a small body covered in white sheet. It’s one thing to see a picture of it and it’s a completely different thing to see it.
We have 36 on the schedule for this week and will start operating tomorrow AM.
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