Medical Update: Pala U – 30th January 2016
Pala U village has 30 houses with almost 200 people who have limited medical care and education and very limited access to the basics of life such as sufficient healthy food, clean water, electricity, toilets and waste disposal facilities.
The trip had several aims:
Operate our field medical clinic Conduct a village assessment Pass on donations The volunteers met in Hua Hin at 6:45am on Saturday morning, loaded the donated clothes, food and medical supplies into cars kindly provided by “Dave’s Car Hire”, Hua Hin, and headed out to the village.
Our volunteers included a doctor, Gerard, medical assistant, Elmi, and our nurse Emma. Also supporting the medical clinic were Chelsea and Thu. Aurélia and Natalia were our photographers, and Keith and Joanne conducted the assessment. For the first time, Katherine took part in a trip, treating the dogs for fleas and taking dogs for spaying at the request of owners.
After arriving at the village we set up the main medical clinic where we saw 10 patients, including two mothers who had given birth in November, and their babies. The babies are being sponsored with baby formula – thanks to the kind donations from Jungle Aid’s supporters – since neither mother is able to produce milk due to malnutrition and difficulties in accessing safe drinking water. Though all villagers were doing relatively well, one of the mothers, aged 23 with three children, is suffering from a heart condition that leaves her tired and weak. Gerard, our doctor, will follow up with her and Hua Hin Hospital on the best course of action.
We also followed up on cases that had been admitted to hospital since our last visit to Pala U. These included 5 cases admitted for dengue fever, malaria, severe allergies, severe flu and a blood complaint.
Our medical team also ran a preventative healthcare seminar using posters created by Jungle Aid volunteer, Garry. The focus was on hand-washing and wearing of flip flops in and around toilets. Since intestinal ailments such as worms and diarrhea and chest and skin infections, are common and recur frequently, we wanted to highlight the importance of personal hygiene. The seminars were enthusiastically attended.
Since our medical team has noted malnutrition and oral thrush in children because they are being fed condensed sweetened milk, we discussed with the shopkeeper how she could replace this with UHT milk that we will help source.
The assessment team gathered information from several households on their specific needs. We met with a student from one of the poorer families who wants to continue her education into Year 12 to study teaching. We provided an education sponsorship request form that we will complete with her and her family on our next trip. We also discussed with the village leader how we could improve sanitation and water supply in future since 80% of the villagers don’t have access to a toilet and all gather water from a river that is a long way from many houses and runs dry during the dry season. The village has several dogs that are undernourished, often sick and sources of illness for the villagers. Katherine treated the dogs with flea powder and worming tablets and with the permission of the community took one of the dogs to be spayed.
Food and clothes distribution
After the medical clinic we distributed the clothes that had been kindly provided by our donors. We would like to say a special thank you to our supporters, Stitch and Bitch who donated knitted baby hats… the weather has been cold recently so these were appreciated very much.
fter an amazing day with the incredible volunteers we headed home.
If you are interested in joining us on a trip please sign-up on the Jungle Aid ‘Meetup’ website here. You will see that places are limited so it is better to sign-up earlier.
We have many volunteer roles available – some require technical skills but others require mainly passion and enthusiasm. If you have skills in the following or know someone who does, Jungle Aid would be very keen to hear:
Project manager: To identify and implement community-based projects
Technology: Website design and maintenance
Health: Doctor, Nurse, Dentist, Nutritionist
Environment: Water engineer, Sanitation expert
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