We Witness Walking Miracles

Life in Haiti is different, which in no way means that their way of life is wrong because they are not like us. I’ve learned very quickly that our western ways are not the grace of everything. Our western society demands that problems be solved, questions be answered, and interventions be prompt and successful, but in Haiti efficient and positive
outcomes are a luxury. In the U.S. we have MRIs, X-rays, and fully stocked labs at the tip of our fingers ready to be fired up and probed for answers. Here at the clinic our physicians are making tough diagnoses without the use of modern technology and sometimes have to deliver heartbreaking news. In truth, there are cases that we just cannot help because Haiti does not have the proper resources.
Just this past week one of our physicians had to sit down with a 25 year old diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and compassionately explain that he would likely not live past six months due to lack of the specific resources needed to sustain his body’s function. While some masses, tumors, and diseases our surgeon is able to operate on, in some cases the saying “life is short” and “time is limited” becomes a reality.At what point do you realize how well off we as Americans live? We become impatient when our problems can’t be fixed fast enough and neglect the fact that what we demand out of health care others don’t have the luxury to demand. This clinic operates as “medical help in the purest form”, Garron Lukas the surgeon on our trip stated. We listen to people who come with a problem and provide all the resources we have available for their issues free of insurance and medical politics. And even if our idea is a simple intervention and wish we had more to give we still receive gratitude in return.There is brokenness and heartbreak in Haiti but there are also stories of joy. Just today a 70 year old women walked in with a pulse of 33 and a blood pressure of 260/190 sitting as calmly as can be. Ten rechecks later the numbers were confirmed, the woman stated she was fine . . . she walked away with meds in hand, and we talked and laughed over dinner about how she would probably outlive us all.Here at FOTCOH amidst the pain and difficult diagnoses we witness walking miracles which fuels our desire to continue treating patients. Although Haiti does not have the advanced medicine that the States has, we are trying to bridge the gap and give them the medical care and treatment they so desperately need.
-Anika Bousema