My perception of Hospital staff is that they should be very sensitive to the plight of the people whom they are treating. This should be the case from cleaners, to finance to marketing to medical staff to the administrators.
As the Primary Health Administrator, preaching “team” at Phul Kumari Mahato Memorial Hospital (PKMMH) in Karjanha, Siraha is what I do on a regular basis. But it’s not that straightforward. However, given circumstances I can see how a team is forming.
I’ve befriended a lot of children in the village because I’m still a child at heart. I’m also a father and I love children. This is also one way that I feel that I can gain the confidence and trust of their parents ultimately leading to collaborating in a variety of areas, e.g. livelihoods development. Recently I noticed that one of my little friends had some large infected pimples on her face, one very close to her right eye. I took her hand and walked her into the emergency room. I could tell that she was afraid, ready to cry and although she is seven she told me that she had never been to a doctor. I sat her down and reassured her, we called her father who came over. The nurse on duty spoke kindly to the little girl also providing reassurance. The doctors proceeded to treat her laying on an ER table, with many of her friends, both boys and girls, holding her hands and comforting her. She didn’t cry or scream out.
Two doctors at the Hospital and our nursing staff treated the little girl and gave her some cream for her face. The next day I saw my young friend and the doctors cleaned her infections again. The doctors didn’t charge for the girls’ treatment as the family is very poor.
The next evening I went to her house to see how she was doing. There were many friends at the house. I talked about how important it is to wash one’s hands and face with soap and water. All of the children understood this basic health lesson but they are also battling finding clean water.
A few days later an elderly man and woman came to the ER, the man having feinted in the field where he worked, needing numerous stitches in his forehead. The woman was very upset and we brought her a chair and I sat down next to her and held her hand. The person at the cash counter went and filled up a bottle of water for the woman and her other family members who had all walked quite some distance to get to the Hospital. Again the medical staff did an admirable job in helping this family
On another occasion while driving from our Mirchaiya Branch to Karjanha we noticed a man in a wheelchair on the side of the road. We stopped and although he was somewhat mute he explained to us that he had a tire puncture. We loaded him in his wheelchair in the back of the Hospital truck and took him to Bandipur to try to get a new tire. We couldn’t find one and took him to PKMM Hospital, where a canteen worker helped me bathe him and cut his nails, in which staff from Marketing, Store, Lab, Pharmacy, Helpers and Engineering all participated in various assistance including washing his clothes. We cleaned his numerous bags and his wheelchair which were terribly dirty. We put the man in the emergency room and hopefully he is getting a good night’s sleep. We’ve spoken with numerous NGOs and one Nepal Leprosy Trust looks like they will be able to help.
I don’t take anything for granted; I have high expectations. But I do know that there is heart and the beginning of a team at PKMM Hospital, in rural, somewhat remote Nepal.