Saturday, March 22, 2014
I am sick...the nurse is sick.
I have had congestion and a cough for two days now and it looks like my cough is just getting worse. The good news is I feel well enough to work and I am sure It will run its course here in a few days.
This week was a busy but successful one. We had a conference with an administrative representative for a laboratory in guayaquil about the new insurance and about our motives to have a contract with them. They have several different laboratories located throughout Guayaquil and we will be able to send missionaries to the laboratory without seeing a doctor or receiving a script for exams. In the past we have sent missionaries to clinics, the first day they have a consult with a doctor, the second day they have labs done such as blood or urine, 3rd day imaging if needed such as echogram or xrays etc, and then they return a fourth time to read all the results with the doctor. This has taken so much time out of the sector and a lot of money. This sparked the idea that maybe we could just send missionaries to a lab and order tests that we want and send the results of the exams to the area medical doctor in Bogota, Colombia for evaluation for treatment. This means the missionary will only have to go to the lab to drop off a specimen or have blood drawn and we can receive the results by internet. Cutting down 4 visits to 1 as well as costs for doctor visits. Dr. Piepgrass and President loved the idea however I was not sure if it could be done. We made a lot of calls and visits to different laboratory facilities. Last we heard, the insurance company and the laboratory we had a conference with were starting to make the contract yesterday. I am beyond thrilled that this is coming to pass! Also come to find out this company also offers an ambulance service that will transfer from smaller clinics in other provinces and imaging.
Yesterday we traveled with president to Libertad (the peninsula) and I got to see the BEACH.... from the car window but still… first time to leave Guayaquil. My companion Hermana Saucedo, who I am training right now for nursing, and Hermana Smith, my last companion, performed health interviews for all the missionaries in the zone. We have a medical history sheet that they filled out and explained any complications on the mission or before etc. Also they did a lot of teaching on prevention of illnesses and my favorite.... how to use a thermometer. We use the glass ones here and about 70 percent of the missionaries do not know how to use one. This makes it very difficult to explain to them over the phone etc. They also took blood pressures and pulses and talked a lot about diet and exercise. While they did the interviews, Hermana Blas, the other new nurse, and I assessed 3 clinics and talked with administration about the new insurance etc. There are actually about 9 clinics in Libertad and the neighboring town Santa Elena. We didn't have time to assess all of them but found a fairly nice clinic that we are most likely going to use. Hermana Blas and Smith will assess the other 6 clinics. It was a lot of fun to tour the clinics and see how things work here. We also taught a few small lessons about the gospel here and there to staff at the clinics. It was nice to visit Libertad but for some reason I was happy to be back in Guayaquil. Guess it is kind of like my home in Ecuador.
The office elders call us insurance salesmen and President and Hermana Dennis are so thrilled about what we are doing. One week into the projects and so far so good!
President and Hermana Dennis will be traveling this weekend so they asked Hermana Saucedo and I to stay the night Sunday with their daughter Sara in the mission home. We are so excited and Hermana Saucedo loves working as a nurse! She now wants to go to nursing school when she gets back. We are still taking all the calls of the sick missionaries but hopefully in 2 weeks Hermana Smith and Hermana Blas will start receiving calls from the zones in Guayaquil and we will receive the calls from the 5 zones outside of Guayaquil.