Monday, 2 March 2015

A Day of Two Halves

Today has been an interesting day.......
 
The First Half
This morning I was invited to meet some UK medics that have been working in Sierra Leone and talk about why I'm here and what I do here. I was SO nervous, but I think it went well. They were all really nice and a few people were interested in sponsoring students - which is fantastic!!
 
People tell me that I'm brave to come here, but really my risk is minimal and I feel I have to be here with the people that I've grown to love over the years.
The people I met today are amazing, they have chosen to come here, to help rid us of this sickness, possibly putting themselves at risk, to help perfect strangers.......it restored my faith in humanity to meet people so selfless.
 
After my short talk we all had lunch and I had some time to chat and catch up with an old friend that I'd not seen since 2008!!
 
I'm going to help them by distributing aid that they have collected but were unable to share out.
 
The Second Half
This afternoon was a totally different kettle of fish........I went to the house of Alhaji the boy who fell in boiling water over the weekend (click here to see the post about him). The doctor who had promised to visit did come after I'd left yesterday, and was due to return again this morning, but still hadn't arrived by 3pm.
 
Alhaji was pretty much the same as yesterday, still in an enormous amount of pain - but even so, when I arrived  he stood up to say "hello aunty". He wasn't dressed today, but rather had a sheet draped over his shoulders which I think is probably better for him.
 
I decided that it would be better if I went to the hospital first without the boy to see if there was a chance of admitting him, rather than put him through the pain of the journey unnecessarily. When I got to the hospital they told me that it was now an Ebola holding centre. I carried on into town to the big government hospital and found the children's ward - they told me that if we took him there they might be able to admit him.
 
I've also called Doctor Koroma to ask him to advise me what he thinks will be best for the boy - hopefully we'll be able to talk in the morning.
 
I'm hoping that tomorrow we'll be able to either get Alhaji admitted to hospital or work out a way to ensure he gets the treatment he needs at home.
 
On a side note......some things I don't think I'll ever get used to, nor do I want to - when I drove past the mortuary today there was a hearse with a team of people in full PPE unloading a body.........Ebola may be on the wane, but it's still very much here.

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