Monday, August 6, 2012

First few days in Mombasa

Sorry for the delay in reporting..need to get better at blogging every day. My first few days here have been quite busy, but very fun so far. I arrived in Mombasa, Kenya at 2:30am local time (6:30p CST) That night I slept until about 12pm. There were a total of 6 people prior to our visit; two from Canada, one from London, and three others from the States. Now in total we have 23 residence in our "compound." We have a few caretakers who clean each housing unit (sleeps 4 each) and cooks meals for us. At night, we have two security guards that walk around the compound. On our first two days we were shown around the town as we needed to buy minutes for our phone and modem for the internet. They have a nice little market village area where you can buy food just like in the states and electronics, cosmetics, etc..The part of Kenya we are staying in is very Westernized. Sunday we went down to the beach for a few hours as we are right along the Indian Ocean. The water is very comfortable, but very salty as well. Thus far, the Kenyan people are very friendly to us 'mzungus' (foreign people). Got to experience the night life and it was quite interesting as they listen to a lot of American music at the bars. The African beer is not too bad, kind of resembles Coors Light. Yesterday, we had our orientation at the Coastal Province General Hospital in Mombasa. We went at night time and boy was it kind of creepy looking. It is an open air hospital. We were given a tour by one of the main doctors and explaining how we will be split up into groups since there are so many of us. They have five main areas that include surgery, minor(sutures, changing dressings)/major (local anesthetics are used) theater, casualty (ER), maternity, and orthopedic. They also have clinics for diabetes, HIV/malaria, and TB. So we will have the opportunity to experience it all while time here. Today, was our start day at the hospital. Nothing like getting hands-on right away as I got to assist in changing a few supra-pubic catheters in the minor theater. This included taking water out of the balloon that is lodged in the urethra and once that is all emptied out then you can remove the catheter. Each wound site with every patient is cleaned with a gauze soaked in iodine. Then once you dab and clean the area the new catheter is lubed up and placed back into the the opening site. Once placed in correctly, water is injected into the catheter to blow the balloon back up so the catheter will not fall out. Then we would attach the urine bag. Besides changing a few catheters, changing dressings was the other main care and watching sutures be removed. So it was a great start to the program!

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