Saturday, November 12, 2011

Getting Sick Enough To Stay 2 Nights In The Hospital

About two weeks ago I suddenly got really, really sick in the middle of the night.  The whole next day I lost so many fluids (in every way that you can lose them) that I even passed out and Victor had to carry me to the car and then into the hospital.  I think that Victor and the kids were scared because it was pretty extreme.  As soon as I got into the hospital they gave me some injections and an IV and I became alert again.  After some tests the doctor said that I had Typhoid Salmonella.  (I later discovered that you actually can not diagnose this in a few hours but I think the doctor had seen it enough to declare it after looking at a patient and the other test results).  You get Typhoid Salmonella from eating or drinking something contaminated, which is really unbelievable because I am the most cautious person I know here in Mozambique and I think most people think I'm a little crazy with how far I go to make sure food and drinks are okay before eating/drinking them.  I spent the next two days in the hospital and then was okay enough to leave and finish recovering at home.

While I was in the hospital I was pretty overwhelmed by the (lack of) safety and sanitary conditions.  For example - the entire clinic has only one bathroom - a bathroom with no toilet paper and a toilet that didn't flush.  The hospital is treating people who have all kinds of different diseases - a large majority of which only still exist here because of these exact poor sanitary conditions!!!  There were also problems with nurses administering IV drugs at the correct intervals and preparing syringes (where sterility is crucial) in a way where the syringe was touching dirty mosquito nets right before being injected.  I am really really really thankful that I survived the clinic.

I am also really really thankful for my wonderful African doctor who was patient, kind, knowledgeable, and willing to listen to, put up with, and answer all my paranoid questions and concerns.  The clinic I stayed in is the best one available in our city.  There are about half a million people here and probably no more than 20 doctors.  I can hardly fathom the difference in healthcare here in Mozambique compared with where I come from.  Being sick here can be really really scary.  Thank you so much - you who prayed for me when I was sick.  Please keep praying for the healthcare situation in Mozambique and in all developing nations.  There is still a LONG way to go in this area.  I know that God's hand is on all of us and we especially feel this in the orphanage where we have come through most crises okay.  We believe this is largely because of all who are praying for us.

TJ also got sick with the same thing and had to spend a few days in the hospital the next week.  A few of the kids got sick too but none of them seriously enough to stay in the hospital.  And even Yohani, who eats everything I eat, never got sick, which I am SO grateful for.

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