Nov 28: Update From Dr. Georgia, South of the Border
Worked till late tonight but so glad to be here. The last 3 hours saw 6 folks with temps over 104! So much influenza! So little complaints. I saw one young man who just wanted me to see his daughter. She was very sick with a temp over 104 but I took his to reassure his young daughter that I wasn’t going to hurt her and his was 105!!! He said don’t worry about him, just take care of his little girl. I found a room to quarantine these folks (over 8) and we are starting medicines but anti-influenza drugs are over $200 each. Miraculously we got enough but all pitched in (thank you Carrie that everyone got treated). People continue to be sleeping on floors, in hallways and children hugging their mothers or fathers (rarely are they together with both) but hopeful someday they will be. Most people are sick to some degree and I am happy to be here but supplies are inadequate and I am hoping to better the situation. The doctor who has been in charge works in Brownsville and is overwhelmed by the situation now. She has many other responsibilities. I am hoping I can help her over this next month because medical services are desperately needed and she is tempted to just call a halt to medical care except some otc’s to be handed out by staff. More is needed.
Again, most volunteers and staff speak only Spanish (as well as the patients) so my Spanish is getting better but I need more time here. Ana is a Godsend!!! She keeps us organized and clean (as much as possible). Luckily, because of other experiences, I feel pretty comfortable in make-shift spaces and chaos surrounding most humanitarian aid settings. I think there are probably 300-500 a day coming through at this time. I don’t keep track and keep focused on my little part.
I know most of you would really like to be spending time here and hopefully you can at some point. It definitely makes us better people, more humane and humble! Will turn in now but love you all dearly! Love, Georgia