Monday, October 12, 2009

Snake season


He wraps himself in light as with a garment. Ps 104:2a

Dr Sam in Special CareDaniel has recently found a good new helper at the hospital. Here is Sam with his doctor’s bag visiting little F**thin. This small child had pneumonia and needed to be on oxygen and antibiotics. Almost all of our oxygen comes from oxygen concentrators which run on electricity. When we have sick patients like this we run the generator 24hrs a day. We have 2 concentrators in the hospital… the recently set record is 4 patients on oxygen (2 on each concentrator).
Over the last 2 weeks we have had 5 patients (counting this morning) admitted to Rumginae This boy made an excellent recovery after receiving precious antivenomafter a snake bite. With 2 of these, we needed to give antivenom. Both claimed to have been bitten by a death adder but had no response to paralysis relaxing medication and had poor blood clotting. The clinical picture of ‘snakebite’ in this area is changing with symptoms and signs that don’t match up with what is expected. We are presuming that some of these bites are from the PNG ‘smalled eyed snake’. Thankfully, all of our recent snake bite patients have made an excellent recovery. This is a picture of a 14 month old boy who was very unwell when he arrived. The antivenom he received is very precious and we were so thankful to have an adequate supply. Praise God for the way He provides and heals.
DSCF3867With Dr Addy in Daru talking with Provincial Health authorities and providers this weekend and Dr Mike winding down and packing for their return to the USA, it has been quite busy. Yesterday (Saturday) evening was full of the usual entertainment on offer around here! Pilot Mike in the MAF Cessna 206 was able to bring in 3 sick patients. A boy with a broken and very painful leg is shown here being moved from the plane to the vehicle. A young lady from Mougulu was on the same plane and she had been in labour for 36 hours. The only option for a live baby and healthy mother was a caesarian and it was exciting to see a healthy baby boy later that night after the operation.
The third patient really tells the story of some of the challenges in  2 ladies just off the plane, both needing operations that night. Sam climbing on the truck while loading the patients and luggagehealth care in PNG and the way different groups work together to bring glory to God. N*na had her third baby in the village at Baniso on Wednesday. The baby came feet first (breech). It died not long after birth and the placenta did not come out. There is no health worker at Baniso to help her. This problem happened with both of her previous pregnancies (one baby lived, one baby had died). She walked 2 days to nearby Fuma, then continued walking to Mougulu health centre. At Mougulu, 3 days after having the baby, she was given some treatment and put on the plane to Rumginae that was coming that day. Baniso is extremely isolated as you can imagine, and coming up with K350 each ($160) for a flight to Rumginae is either impossible or an enormous burden shared by many relatives. We are very grateful for various donations that enable us to assist financially at times like this. We are very grateful for the ministry of Christian Radio and Missionary Fellowship (CRMF) based in Goroka who enable important radio communication. We are also very grateful for Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) who are always willing to go out of their way (literally) to save lives.
Please remember CRMF and MAF in your prayers. Praise God that we were able to be part of bringing health to these patients yesterday.
But if you thought it stopped there… imagine competing with static to talk with Lake Campbell and Mougulu as well as MAF by radio during the day to help with medivac details, then picking up the patients from the plane, taking them to the hospital, assessing them, operating until about 10pm… then finally getting to sleep to be called again at 1am ‘Dr Daniel, Mid Ward here. One lady has just delivered a baby here and the second twin is not in a good position’. Sometimes I need to sit on the edge of the bed for ages to wake up… calls like this make that luxury not available. Within a minute or two I was in the delivery suite turning the baby around so it could be delivered safely. A healthy baby girl Daniel and pilot Mike overseeing the large group of helpers load the boy with the broken leg into the missionary vehicle for the trip around the airstrip to the hospital(delivered by internal podalic version and breech extraction for those with a medical mind)… and with a short interruption at 6am for radio advice, most of a good nights sleep was had. Thank you to those who pray for us. We really appreciate your prayers at times like this.
There is a lot of discussion at all levels of health care support and provision at the moment including governments and donor agencies. Addy is in Daru at meetings this weekend. There are also important meetings in Cairns soon. Please pray that there would be good outcomes which deliver improved health services. Addy was also able to get to the PNG medical symposium this year. It has been very helpful getting involved in more ‘big picture’ things, particularly as we seek direction here at Rumginae considering things like training for PNG doctors in remote and rural medicine.
Dr Mike and family are soon heading home to the US. Pray for them Mike takes aim at a coconut 20m away during independence celebrations at Briompenai villagethat they would experience God’s gracious provision and care as they start this new phase. This picture is taken at Briompenai village while Mike aims his arrow at a cocounut during Independence Day celebrations. He’s not a bad shot! There were many dances and dramas and cultural activities.

 Sam dressed up for IndependenceIndependence Drama









Independence arrow shooting











Please pray for MAF & CRMF, for Dr Mike’s family as they leave soon, for Dr Addy still settling in again, for Dr Sharon out in the village. Pray for Sharon as she farewells the village and starts work at Rumginae in December. Pray for a visa and work permit to come through quickly for Dr Sharmini for November. Pray also for the new MAF family coming very soon: Jason, Melanie and their children that they would settle in well to Rumginae.
Over the last week we have seen some beautiful sunsets, rainbows, clouds, stars, moon rises and more. Praise God for His creation. We are also thankful for good health lately & that school has been going well. Praise God with us for the work He has called us to here.
We are in the process of planning our home assignment / furlough. We will be in Australia from December and plan to return to Rumginae in about May 2010. We will be visiting those churches who we have close contact with. Please let us know if you would like to catch up with us, or have us speak.
Daniel and Tammy
The clouds are your chariot with the wind as its wings (Psalm 104:3)