Village Life

January 16, 2017

It’s a never-ending adventure when you head to the village – and a challenge at times to think out of the box about ways to help patients and their families. The village is a place that may seem lacking in physical resources – but it’s full of curious children, welcoming families and appreciative patients. Often I’m asked to see a patient’s neighbor…a person who also has a physical disability and has yet to ever have physical therapy. Once the community sees what it’s all about – they understand that others could also benefit.

There were six patients that I regularly visited in the adjacent village – just a short walk from the hospital…an elderly woman with a stroke, a retired school teacher with a stroke, a retired school administrator with diabetes and a stroke, a businessman and farmer recovering from a back injury and two young children with cerebral palsy. “Appointments” were made as we passed each other in the market buying supplies for our meals, or in passing along the many footpaths. One of the children had moved, so when I went to his old house, the neighbors kindly escorted across the village to his new home.

Other village visits were made to follow up on patients seen in the hospital. One mother came twice to the hospital, but kept forgetting the child’s braces. So, Alex and I set off to find her at her home (2 hours away). Other patients are followed when they go home by the community health workers who have training in rehabilitation. They do support the patients with chronic illnesses/conditions – and can send text message questions to Alex if they need guidance.

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Four generations!

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Reviewing a home program with a mother

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Showing a family how to put on a child’s braces

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A very special Auntie!

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