Thursday, September 5, 2013

Day 2, Kiambu District Hospital, Kenya


Tuesday was our second day at Kiambu District Hospital.  The site is a large public hospital just north of Nairobi.  PINCC's first visit here was in January so this is the second visit to this site.  The hospital is a collection of old one story cement buildings connected by covered walkways.  The walls are scattered with slightly frayed public health posters about HIV, TB, nutrition and sexual violence.  There are even a few dispensers of free condoms that are periodically restocked.  As we arrive, lines are forming at the various outpatient clinics and services - xray, lab, chest clinic, maternal child health, HIV, and family planning.  The men, women and children, dressed mostly in western dress accessorized with traditional fabrics and shawls gaze at us with curiosity and a few shy smiles as we walk by to set up our clinics. 

 Our trainees for VIA screening exams are mostly nurses.  Many had not previously performed pelvic exams but what they lacked in experience, they have made up for with enthusiasm.  They have been attentive students and have made great strides over these past two days.  Our patients vary in age from 20's to 50's.  Many have been referred from the HIV clinic where they have access to free anti-retroviral medications.  Many have never had any form of cervical cancer screening before.

 We are fortunate at this site to have a skilled gynecologist  who has taken the initiative to try to create a screening program for the region.The logistical hurdles have been significant but Carol and several key members of the Kiambu Hospital staff are tackling them each one by one.  Carol's commitment to this project and amazing skills of gentle persuasion have inspired us all. We are tired tonight but we will all return tomorrow refreshed and ready for our next clinic day. 

Dr. Jean Talbert, Gynecologist, PINCC Volunteer

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