Feb 24, Day 41 – Kendra’s day
In the morning, I was still weak, so the medics decided to stick me with the malaria medicine and then find the first town with a clinic to do the test. In Butanjira, Matthias the medic, Christiano the comms guy, Ferdie the driver, and our Ethipian interpreter accompanied me down the dustry street to the town hospital.
Thank goodness for our local support who registered me (I know have a Service Identification Card for the Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Regional Government, Ethiopia), established my health record, and paid for the test (11 birre = 75 cents). The guys then left me to sit with the locals and wait… and how interesting. I spoke to a pharmacist in training about the state of health care in the area. At this hospital most people are treated for malaria, typhoid, TB, and HIV. There is an x-ray machine and ultra-sound, one full time surgeon and one full time GYN. 11km down the road is the big regional hospital sponsored by Project Mercy.
It was also interesting to just watch the flow of people and their reaction to the only foreigner in the place. It was all very efficient too and within 2 hours or so, the malaria test came back negative, the doctor ordered a typhoid test (also negative) and also, before I could sit in a “waiting room”, I was asked to volunteer for an HIV test. If I had said no, I would have had to sit in an alternative area. So, with everything negative, the doctor was perplexed and only prescribed rest, fluids, and electrolytes. I walked out of the hospital and immediately heard Furunji! My chariot (the TdA van) awaits!