And they came! Today we saw close to 200 patients; a higher elderly population and clearly a more impoverished area with the average salary consisting of 6,500 rupees per month ($100 in the US)  When we drive up in the van and see so many people sitting in chairs awaiting our arrival, you know it is going to be a busy day. After the welcoming ceremony  the camp starts  some newly diagnosed diabetes cases, a lot of follow up patients and many with joint/arthritis pain. One of  explained to me that because their water is filtered, they are without vitamins such as calcium and thus the reason for so much arthritis at younger ages than what we would see in the US.

I enjoy walking through the area to get a feel for the environment, homes, schools etc. Today I had quite a surprise! As I was walking out towards the road I encountered a young boy trying to get my attention. I of course think he is looking for our clinic…but not so. He wanted to show me something in his pocket. Imagine my surprise when a live, newly hatched bird came out! He laughed at my expression  and quickly reached in his other pocket to pull out a second one! As he pulled at the wings and feathers I knew I had to find a translator so  I had him follow me to the clinic. Several of our young nursing students were equally surprised but also quick to help  to the little birds. We found an eye dropper and Dr. Kepes created a nest while the number of people observing quickly grew. Through a translator I was able to explain to this boy the importance of appreciating and caring for nature, especially when these birds no longer had a mother. We also explained why he couldn’t just pour water down these open beaks. I don’t know if the birds will survive but I can only hope that today we not only provided medical care, but we also provided a lesson in appreciating all living things .




Published by

Kim Williams

6 May 2018

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