Day 5: Last, Successful Clinic Day!

Day 6 Update from Dr. Brett Godbout, CH Orthopedic Surgeon:

Today was a very busy day for all of us! Our group of 54 split into two groups with one of the groups going out to a remote village in Nepal – Dr. Hoffman and Matt were in this group. They seemed to have a successful trip, but the journey was not easy as their route was blocked by a landslide and the had to trek for 45 minutes to get to the village. The group I was in stayed inland to treat about 300 Tibetan refugees. All in all, we are doing well and today is our last clinic day. This trip was very worthwhile. Unfortunately, we were not able to get into the operating room during this trip, but if there are any future medical visits to Nepal, with the right preparation and teamwork, I believe it could be done!

Day 6 Update from International Medical Relief:

A quote from Danielle B., RN:

It will be hard to describe in words the spectacular and blessed day we had in the clinic today! We were split into two groups and I was in the group that traveled to the remote Himalayan village. It was a tiring trip, but worth every second. Our  bus ride included beautiful scenery of the mountains the entire way up, stops for photos and the most skilled bus driver I have ever seen. Closer to our destination, we hit a few road blocks (pun intended!) when several large rocks blocked our bus’ path. The only way up was then to walk, so we grabbed our gear and started hiking. It was a wonderful experience to be able to hike such beautiful mountains with such an amazing team. Talk about a group effort hiking up almost 7,000 ft elevation with medical supplies and backpacks. It was about an hour hike to our clinic site where we went right to work! We treated approximately 250 patients ranging from infants to elderly. Once we finished our hike down, some of us enjoyed soaking our feet in the small waterfalls. Namaste!

Day 3: Kindness Still Exists

Day 3 Update from Nicole Bernstein, Administration:

The clinic today was a little smaller than the day before. The patients we saw today were a Tibetan group. They were of all ages but many of them were school aged children. One of the patients that was seen was a Tibetan nun who was very grateful and appreciative for all the help and services we provided for her. One of the nursing students who spoke nepali walked her home and the nun had expressed to her how she had given up on the kindness of mankind until today. She said that our act of kindness reassured her that it still exists and is giving her the will to go on. The dental group that we are partnered with while we are here (we do not have dental with our group) had extracted a tooth for the nun for free. As a way to pay forward and ensure that someone will not be turned away due to a lack in funds, the dentist donated money to the clinic.

Day 3 Update from International Medical Relief:

The winding roads of Nepal were filled with motorcycles, people, dogs, cars, cows, rickshaws, and our buses to take us to a Tibetan refugee camp today.  A quote from Ev, RN and IMR Team Leader:

Over 340 people were seen by our amazing medical team of Ortho docs, Dr. Jim, Dr. Brett and Dr. James, one of our NP’s, Barbara, and our PA’s, Autumn and Jamie, while Dr. Don saw the very young and very old for a multitude of illnesses… and well, just about everything else too! The rain held off again (surprisingly!) until right at the end where our IMR banner got a nice cleaning! Today was an amazing day of giving, kindness, laughter, songs, treatments, well-being, grateful smiles, and warmth… all while the Himalayas watch over us! Namaste!

Day 2: Organization is Key!

Day 2 Update from Dr. James Reid, CH Orthopedic Surgeon:

Today was a far more organized day. We were a much larger group with some serious organization. The coordinated team worked beautifully with the other IMR volunteers. We orthopedists were able to convince the Nepali ministry of health to allow us to give injections and this allowed us to help a lot of patients. We were able to care for over five hundred patients.

Day 2 Update from International Medical Relief:

Your entire team has all arrived after a few delays and every one has had a chance to get to know each other and explore their home away from home.  The hotel is located within a thriving tourist area where shops and restaurants abound.  Much of the Nepalese economy is based in tourism and trekking in the mountains.  Many of the shops are filled with climbing gear for the high Himalaya treks.  Other shops are filled with beautiful woven scarfs, “singing” prayer bowls, and paintings so intricate they are painted with a brush the width of a human hair, objects made from rice paper, amazing masks, teas, and spices.  The restaurants serve food from all of the world with many specializing in Chinese and Tibetan cuisine. A quote from Kimberly G., Nursing Student:

We were told this would be a life changing trip for some of us. However, I don’t think any of us were prepared for what all this day would bring… at least I wasn’t. We rode in buses through Nepal to set up a clinic up above the city. Once we arrived at our destination, we received the official Nepali welcome: piping hot tea and biscuits on the community center rooftop! After set-up, we began to see patients. We were split up into different areas: lab, registration, triage, orthopedics, general medicine, vision, pharmacy, and Women’s care… Heather and Kalli, worked with the orthopedic doctors teaching patients stretching exercises. This team came together to deliver the kind of care our patients needed and deserved, cared for over 300 patients and we could not have asked for a more fulfilling day! Namaste!

Day 1: We Made It!

Day 1 Update from Jamie Weis, CH Physician Assistant:

We finally made it to Nepal!  After almost two days of traveling, we arrived at the hotel Friday night, met some of our other team members, and quickly organized supplies to head out to the first clinic in the morning.

This morning we drove to an impoverished, dusty, suburb in Nepal and set up a day clinic inside a grammar school.  Here, along with some Nepali health officials, we assessed and treated 210 mostly elderly patients.  Many of the conditions, such as arthritis, were similar to what we commonly treat at home.  In some time between seeing patients, we played soccer with local kids and made balloons out of gloves.  It has been a rewarding experience so far.

Introduction to Nepal, 2017

Coordinated Health (CH) is proud to announce that 9 of its employees have teamed up with International Medical Relief (IMR) to support a medical mission in Nepal. The trip is a specialized orthopedic surgical mission trip, and three CH orthopedic surgeons are expected to operate while there. The team members spend close to 16 hours on a plane, with limited resources, in one the most impoverished countries in the world, where the household income is only $700 per year. The CH employees are using their own personal time off to provide care and treatment to these communities.

Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/fishing-women-nepal-river-network-644318/

CH is serving Nepali and Tibetan refugee communities, and assisting many citizens who were injured during the 2015 Gorkha earthquake. The population of the region is roughly 31 million people, and earthquakes and pollution have damaged numerous temples and palaces, as well as injuring many residents. Human and animal waste, agricultural run-off, and industrial effluents contaminate the local water supply, meaning that only about 35 percent of the total population have access to sanitation facilities, making the degree of risk of infectious diseases very high. Although the weather is expected to be mild during the trip, with an average temperature of 84°F, the visit is occurring during the middle of monsoon season.

The team is excited to document and share their individual journeys as they set out to provide care to these underserved communities.