It’s been about 10 days since I last posted to this blog. No big steps taken since the last entry but I can recap. Mostly it’s been a normal week of mentoring with a few trips.
Last Saturday, I went with Holly & Kelly to the pre-school/daycare at the Poly-clinic which is on the NMH campus. The staff at NMH can bring their children to the daycare while they are at work. There can be anywhere from 50 to 80 children per day. Someone had sent Holly a box of stuffed animals and school supplies, so I helped her carry it and distribute it. It is like Christmas, giving the kids the stuffed animals and school supplies. I stuffed a few of the smaller animals into my magazine pouches on my IBA and gave them out to the children as we saw them. The children very much appreciate the goodwill.
I also drove when we went to NDS for a day of mentoring. I like driving the Humvees through Kabul. We leave a little earlier in the morning so we can beat the traffic. I brought the OT Nurses at NDS much of the same reference material I give to the nurses at NMH. I have given them information in both English and Dari. My next project is to get the Chief OT Nurse from NMH to talk with the Chief OT Nurse at NDS so we can set up some cross-training between the two hospitals. I have talked to each separately and both are excited to train their staffs together. I should be able to facilitate a meeting between the two in the very near future. NMH is busier than NDS and does more cases, so we are going to try and bring the NDS OT nurses to NMH. NDS has a newer facility, so the NMH nurses want to see NDS.
Most of the rest of the week was spent on another project for the NMH OT. We are trying hard to establish a new OT schedule, which I mentioned in my previous entry. I made copies of the new scheduling worksheet and we handed them out in the surgeon’s morning meeting. They all agreed to use this process, but none have actually submitted their schedule this way yet. I am not sure where the disconnect is. I need to go to the doctor’s morning meeting again and re-address this to ask why.
Another project that goes along with the schedule is getting the ortho docs to only schedule 1 case at a time. They currently do 2 surgeries at the same time in one big OT room. One day last week, I went into that room and came unglued on how the cases were progressing. It was like going back in time…and they had forgotten everything we have discussed. I have to get them (Ortho) to develop a surgical conscience and do what is best for the patient, not what is easiest for the surgeons. We will be having a big meeting this week with the Heads of Ortho, Surgery and the OT with their respective US Mentors. We are going to take 1 of the tables out of the room so they can only operate on 1 patient at a time. I am not going to limit the number of cases, only limit them to 1 case in 1 room at a time. They will need to operate on more days per week, and if necessary, we can give them an additional room as time permits. It seems like an easy solution, but it will take much discussion and compromise.
I also spent 2 days going back and forth to Camp Phoenix as the lead humvee driver. We had a small incident with one of the antennas for the ECM getting bent. The maintenance shop at Phoenix tried to repair it the first day, but weren’t completely successful. We had to go back again the following day to have it replaced, and we had the antennas upgraded and replaced on all three vehicles. We spent most of each day at Phoenix, waiting on the vehicles. The first day had a bazaar on base and we spent some time walking around. As I was walking, I ran into one of the Army guys I trained with at Fort Riley, Morris. He was in my barracks and we went fishing together while in Kansas. His team is from Alabama and I made some mention of them in my blogs from Riley. They are currently being retasked to a new mission. They have been in Kandahar since arriving in theater, and are now spending a little time at Phoenix inbetween missions. It was good to see them and swap a few stories.
Other than that, not much else to blog about. Over halfway now through the mentoring mission. Hopefully, all we are teaching will be sustainable…
Sorry, no new pictures this week.