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Tag Archives: orthopedics

Mission End, Part 2: Long road home

It’s been a long week in Port-au-Prince. I am super excited to get home and see Allison, my kids and take a long, long shower. 

We have only a few hours left here and it truly has been another amazing experience. The team just gelled as they always do in these crazy circumstances, and all were working in unison. We really are larger than the sum of our parts.

In a weird way it is tough to leave.  I will miss the sounds, the smells, the patients and our new team family.  Everyone always asks why do you go back?  That’s why. The patients who need our help. The amazing people so eager and willing to give it.  

It’s been non-stop here. Last night I met with senior doctors in Haiti last night to ensure as many participants as possible get the benefit of the teaching we are offering.  That’s so important for the medical infrastructure here. And today, I had a great opportunity to secure some space to store materials and help our good friends at Project Stitch.  Jo and Scott are incredibly dedicated to giving these often forgotten patients their lives back. To treat them with the dignity they deserve. It is an honour to be a part of it.  

Meanwhile on the compound, there have been three multiple-injured patients come in over night and all hands are on deck once again, sprinting to the finish line.

In a bizarre twist, we saw a man who got shot in the head… wait for it… TWO DAYS AGO… and walked into hospital asking to be assessed.  The X-ray showed a bullet in his skull… like I said in a previous blog, this place never ceases to surprise you.

We have all worked so hard and are all exhausted but excited to get home to family and friends. Passing the baton to the Dalhousie team next. I have no doubt they’ll be amazing.

Many of you have sent such amazing notes of support for the team. I can’t tell you how much we appreciate it and how it lifts us up to do more for the people of Haiti. Thank you so much for that. Please keep it up. It truly does help.

From 33 degrees in Port-au-Prince to 1 degree in St. John’s, see you all soon.

– Andrew

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Posted by on April 4, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Day 2 in Haiti: Broken bones, broken AC, but an unbroken will.

I’m expecting that if I complain that the air conditioning in the OR is broken, I may get a few angry responses from those still in winter’s headlock.

Yesterday was crazy busy but still exciting.  Yes, I did get that femur fixed and the team saw over 50 patients in the clinic.

Every step forward is a reminder of how many more there are ahead. Lots to be done.

So glad the Halifax team will be here next week. This is a relay and you are only as good as the ones you hand the baton off to. The folks of the Halifax team are among the best.

It’s tough being away from the kids. That gets even tougher when you’re thousands of miles away and your child is in pain. Yeah, little fright from home yesterday when one of my kids had an orthopedic issue.  Thank you so much to the team at home for all your help. He’s ok but still he’s on my mind every minute and it kills me not to there for him.  One day I hope he will recognize how lucky we are to have the Janeway. The kids don’t have that here. Someday I hope they will.

I believe the reminders and comparisons of where we are to where we come from are important. Hard, but so important. The team visited the general hospital in downtown Port-au-Prince yesterday.  It’s incredibly sad to see the despair and frightening to think of the fate of some of these patients. I could tell by the looks on every team member’s face that we all walked away wanting to do more. We will. None of us are giving up on this place.

Huge thunder and lightening storms cooled the compound and brought much needed rain to the country last night.

Back at our hospital, I keep thinking of my little guy at home as I watch the pediatric nurses doing such an amazing job.  Triage has been a force. What a great team. Better together, I always say.

Ah the AC is finally working in the OR.   Need to take advantage of this window.   

– Andrew

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Posted by on March 31, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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