The blog updates will be fewer this year as there is no internet at the mission compound where the group is staying. Joan Bohnstedt spoke with Sharayah this morning and learned the following:
Sari got the router working, but the modem is shot. The hospital's internet is also very sporadic so most communication this year will come through phone calls and texts.
Luke and Eli are healthy again and so is everyone else in the group.
Sharayah and Caroline received their bags, but Pr. Luther's box remains missing. It may be gone forever as it had some electronic equipment in it that was supposed to be left there.
This year they are painting and redoing the pediatric portion of the hospital. (This is the same section of the hospital that they put the mosquito screens on the windows three years ago.) They are painting the pediatric ward in a Noah's Ark theme. The rooms are now very dark. They are painting each room a different color of the rainbow, including the ceilings, to help lighten up the rooms. They will also be painting animals in each room to continue the theme. After the inside is painted, they will paint the outside of the building. They got the supplies yesterday (Monday) from the hardware store in town and started painting today.
Three members of the team are redoing the play structure by adding the swings and some other pieces, while others are working on the ambulance. Additionally, some of the other team members are shadowing a few of the hospital personnel.
These pictures of the pediatric ward, the ambulance and the cooking area are from the trip two years ago.
A little background on how the hospital is set up from Joan:
The hospital is set up quite differently from an American hospital. Instead of being one big building, it is more like a compound with many smaller one or two story buildings. There is a pediatric building, a surgery center, a maternity ward, pharmacy, admin building and some others.
Another huge difference is that in Cameroon, is that the families of the patients are responsible for feeding and taking care of the patients such as giving meds. It's also a pay as you go system meaning that a patient gets a booklet that is their medical record. After the patient registers and pay the admittance fee, s/he goes to the area where they need to receive care. Then they are looked at and diagnosed. Afterwards the patient or a family member goes back down to the cashier, pays for the supplies/medicine and then takes it back where the patient is being treated. Hospital staff then use the supplies/medicine to treat the patient.
If the patient's care requires an overnight or longer stay, there are buildings out back where family members may stay (often times with most of the family including the kids). They remind me of quonset huts with a room for each family. There is also an area to do laundry by hand (no machines) and a building for cooking (over an open fire).
Thank you for your continued prayers. Please pray for the team as they work and interact with hospital personnel, patients, and others in the community, continued health, and energy and fun as they do their projects.