Earlier this month, 9 year old Mohamed Steven received first and second degree burns on his hands, buttocks and lower leg. He received emergency treatment at Mercy Hospital and was admitted for longer term care.
Within three weeks, Mohamed could walk around without assistance. His parents are much happy for seeing their child alive and active.
Mercy Hospital held the first general staff meeting of 2018 on January 10th. Three staff members were given Staff of the Month awards; Mohamed Koroma (HIV/AIDS Counselor) for October, 2017, Mohamed Khadar (Outreach Coordinator) for November 2017, and Mohamed S. Koroma (Maintenance Supervisor) for the month of December 2017.
Pharmacist Sida Saffa was awarded the Staff of the Year Award for 2017, "in recognition of [his] immeasurable hard work, dedication, selfless acts of time and outstanding work ethics during the 2017 operational year."
One year old Phillipa Joy was recently brought to Mercy with shortness of breath, and was subsequently diagnosed with pneumonia. After a few days of treatment, she was feeling much better, breathing normally, and ready to go home.
Seventy-year-old John George was admitted to Mercy Hospital in November with a severe cough. Staff were initially concerned he might have tuberculosis, but happily he tested negative and is responding well to treatment.
“I was so much worse at home. I couldn’t walk by myself and after just a few steps I would be exhausted. I was coughing all day and all night. I couldn’t sleep because the coughing was so bad. I came to Mercy but honestly, I was hopeless that I would get better. But now I am so much better! I can walk, sleep and I am relieved from the coughing.”
Munda Yonjai was admitted to Mercy Hospital for one week with schistosomiasis and a serious kidney infection. “I came in a very bad state. I was not able to walk, not able to sit, not able to lay down on my back, not able to sleep. Now I am much better. I can walk, I can sit, I can lay down, and I am sleeping much better. I thank God and Mercy for all they have done for me!"
Amie came to Mercy Hospital to deliver her third child. She had recently moved to Bo and discovered Mercy because of its well-known prenatal program. She was registered in the program and received critical care before delivery.
Her birth was normal and all seemed well. Soon after birth, her brand-new baby boy was suddenly unable to breathe. Mercy maternity staff sprang into action and were able to successfully resuscitate the baby. Amie says, “Mercy really did a wonderful job for me. Without them, my baby might have died. I am so grateful.”
Mother and baby are doing well and will be discharged tomorrow.
Leaders from medical facilities affiliated with the Sierra Leone Conference of the United Methodist Church recently met in Bo to collaborate their efforts to serve the community. District Medical Officer Dr. Turay invited Mercy Hospital Matron Augusta Kpanabum to do a presentation on cervical cancer screening and its importance for all women of child-bearing age. VIA, visual inspection with acetic acid, is a low cost, very effective technique for identifying precancerous cells, saving women from full blown cervical cancer. The Mercy staff uses a technique taught to them by HCW Board member Dr. Carol McIntosh in October 2016.
Mercy now offers free VIA screening on Fridays, and treats women found to have precancerous cells with cryotherapy. As a result of the Bo district meeting, Mercy Hospital has been identified as the referral health centre for VIA screening and treatment in Bo.
Mercy Lab was recently given the gift of a small refrigerated unit that has been specially modified to safely store blood bags at the required temperature. This generous donation from the Naval Research Laboratory will allow Mercy to store blood for up to two weeks.
Technology like this is not very common in Sierra Leone, and most hospitals are unable to store blood at all. In the past, Mercy was unable to store blood, so whenever a patient required a transfusion it would take a long time to locate an acceptable donor and transfusions needed to happen immediately.
The hope is that Mercy can find a way to start a blood bank so that emergency cases will no longer go through a stressful wait to receive treatment. This will be especially critical once the OR opens.
Three-month-old Hassan was admitted to Mercy on October 23rd with a serious cough. He was diagnosed with pneumonia, and started on treatment. He is improving and his mother is very happy - and judging from that smile, so is Hassan! His mother is only 18, and Hassan is her first child. She had given birth at Mercy and only trusted Mercy with the care of her young son.
Thirty year old Foday Kamara was sitting on his front porch with his wife during a storm when the porch was struck by lightning. Foday fell and hit his head. His wife was also superficially burned. Foday received care at Mercy to ensure that he did not suffer brain damage, and is now fully recovered, although the medical staff at Mercy believe that he may continue to suffer headaches. His wife's injuries were minor and did not require medical treatment.