We completed our first day of work yesterday. Since we are working in the
hospital at higher elevation, the weather is not so hot. The 500 bed Sao San
Tun Teaching Hospital operates by mostly general medical officers, family
physicians, a couple of obstetricians, one general surgeon, and one part
time ophthalmologist. In addition to augmenting the hospital’
ophthalmologist, primary care and obstetric sections, WHA is also providing
the hospital with neurology, gastroenterology, infectious disease, and
emergency room specialists. We have been informed by the hospital staffs
that we were the first foreign medical team to operate out of Sao San Tung
Hospital. Our team treated 500 patients on this first day. There were 700
patients lining up to be seen by the ophthalmology department yesterday.
Needless to say the waiting line was one of the longest anyone of us
providers had ever seen at any clinic. Our ophthalmologist, Dr. Michael
Nguyen, did his best and treated 110 patients on the first day.
Dr. Minh Nguyen, a neurologist, his wife Mai Nguyen, and his son Dang Nguyen
are joining WHA from Canada. “This is the second time we are going with WHA.
My husband and I had a good experience and time in Vietnam,” said Mai
Nguyen. Dr. Minh said “This trip also is exciting for us. We’re so pleased
to meet new as well as old friends from our previous trip. We believe that
this will be a memorable trip for all of us and are thankful to WHA as well
as its members on this mission.” Dang Nguyen, a Physician Assistant, added
“I have been running on about 3.5 hours of sleep for the past several days,
yet I don't feel it quite at all. I guess I am just really looking forward
to seeing the locals and helping as much as I can.”
Dr. Minh Nguyen saw a unique case from a young poor labor worker who had
felt and injured his head on the job six months ago. The patient went to the
hospital but was sent home with a diagnosis of minor skull fracture and
bruises. No treatment was provided. Today he has a huge mass on his head
that looks something like an alien out of Star Trek (see picture). Dr. Minh
Nguyen evaluated this patient and diagnosed him with acquired encephalocele.
Our team was able to talk to the hospital administrator to have this patient
pursued additional neurosurgical care paid by the hospital.
This was a truly remarkable second day as our team integrated and worked
collaboratively with the hospital physicians and staffs as if we have been
here for years.
| DAY 1