If you drink lots of alcohol you will be protected against cholera.
You can buy a medicine in the street which will protect you against cholera.
You can get cholera from the dust in the street
Where we put our first patients
Which all of course are not true. This week Bethesda began to treat cholera patients. At first we had put them in a tent outside which was fine for one day but not good enough. One of our other missionaries Jane had the idea of using one of the old houses which is just beside the clinic. When we went to look at it, it was perfect for exactly what we needed. On Wednesday we arranged the house and brought over all the supplies we need. Thankfully we were able to get more IV fluid in town, this is the main treatment for cholera and last week we we unable to buy any in Cap Haitian.
our new 'hospital' for paients
Since Wednesday we have had a steady flow of patients, mostly children from a number of different areas, and mostly brothers and sisters. We have had a few difficult cases where they have been so dehydrated it has been really difficult to find a vein to put the IV fluids in. One little boy I would like you to pray for especially, he came on thursday morning severely dehydrated and it took our nurses over an hour to find a vein to place an IV. He was given fluids all day and all night and seemed much better on Friday afternoon he was also drinking alot. However he continued to have diarrhoea through the night on Friday and by saturday morning he was severely dehydrated again, as our staff worked on him they couldn't find a vein as he was so dehydrated. We continued to give him fluids by mouth as we were able. Dr Rodney then had an idea of IV into the bone which I have never heard of before but he did it (it was his first time ever...he had just read about it!!). Thankfully we had the equipment and with alot of praying going on at the same time Dr Rodney got it in and the IV started. Since then it has been running, we have been giving him oral fluids aswell all through the night however he is still having continuous diarrhoea and is losing alot of fluid. Please pray today we will be able to find a vein, give me another IV which is so desperately needs so we give him more fluids than he is losing.
Its scary how quickly cholera can dehydrate someone, especially kids. The continuous vomitting and diarrhoea removes all their fluid very quickly. If someone gets cholera time is really the important thing. Friday we had a young girl come in who just started getting sick that night around midnight and by 8 am the next day she was very very unwell. Dr Rodney started two IVs and within 20 mins she was awake and talking. Her mum was crying as her big brother was in the clinic aswell, as soon as she woke up she said 'mummy don't cry for me just pray to God for me,' It was very cute and today she is a million times better eating and drinking.
Thankfully all our other patients are responding well to treatment. My role in the clinic had definitely changed from just a physiotherapist!!Please pray for us as we treat patients, for continuous supplies, for strength for our staff especially Hannah, Dr Rodney and I (please!!) who have been in the clinic long hours and though the night.
This week Bethesda is starting two special weeks of 'Combat Cholera'. Each day the patients will be educated on how they can protect themselves against cholera. Each patient will be given soap, A bottle of chlorox (bleach) and oral rehydration powder. We also have a fixed price of 250 goudes (about $5 US) for each consultation and any medicine which patients need. We expect to have alot of patients and on top of treating cholera patients its going to be hard work!!However we will be able to educate alot of people and give them materials on how they can protect themselves and their families agaisnt cholera. Plus we have a medical team arriving next Saturday from the states which will be great.
**I wrote this yesterday and didn't have chance o post it. Today we have even more patients and our 'hospital' is nearly full. Please continue to lift us up in prayer , also among the business we will have time to share the gospel with our patients.