Tears of compassion, love and hope as the mission comes to an end

Editor’s note: Check this site for updates from the Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney parish in Bettendorf.

Day 5: Thursday, January 24

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Patients wait to be seen at the medical clinic.

By Ann Wester

We have completed our last day of clinic. Our unofficial total is 1,794 patients. This team has been amazing. They are so compassionate and care deeply for every one of our patients. They take the time to listen and see each one of them as a very special person.

We had a celebration dinner tonight and everyone talked about their “God” moments. The moments always revolved around someone showing caring for another.  It was an emotional experience as our first-time members said what the trip has meant for them. Many tears were shed.

We really feel we have helped this week.  Along with the medical care, we gave them hope and showed them love and compassion. It will be sad to leave tomorrow. Going to 6:45 Mass and then say our goodbyes to our Haitian friends. We started this journey with hugs and will end with hugs.

Thanks so much for praying for us this week.  We could definitely feel them, especially as we worked through more challenging problems.

 

Team treats many patients, takes time out to walk the neighborhood

Editor’s note: Check this site for updates from the Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney parish in Bettendorf.

Day 4: Wednesday, January 23

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Dressed in a beautiful white outfit and hat, this woman attended Mass on her 89th birthday at the church of Notre Dame du Rosaire in Jean Denis. Looking on is pastor, Father Jean Salomon Vincent.

By Ann Wester

The unofficial total for today was 337. It was a terrific day. We are seeing many, many patients with high blood pressure and many with diabetes. The dental clinic kept very busy with teeth extractions and fillings. We also did dental education as they waited for their appointment with the doctor. We held a lot of babies and painted nails on the kids while they waited to see the doctor.

This week has gone by so fast, can’t believe tomorrow is our last day of clinic. And even at the end of a full day, the team is smiling. After clinic we went through the village and talked to some of the people in the neighborhood. There are no sidewalks or paved streets. No playground for the kids. No outdoor toys like balls or swings. No swimming pools. They do swim and bathe in the canal but the water is very dirty.

It is hard to describe the very small huts where a family of seven or eight live. We live in such luxury. I can’t imagine living in these conditions. We have so much and they have so little. It is heartbreaking to see.

Keep the prayers coming. We are not done yet!

Busy team ministers to grateful patients

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Members of the 2019 Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney pose in front of the new Our Lady of Fatima school in Jean Denis, Haiti. The school is part of  Notre Dame du Rosaire parish.

Editor’s note: Check this site for updates from the Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney parish in Bettendorf.

Day 4: Tuesday, January 22

By Ann Wester

We have seen over 1,100 patients in the past three days. Today was busy but really good. The Haitian patients are so grateful for what we can give them even if it is having a tooth extraction.

We sent two patients to the hospital for further testing today. The ones that are hard are those to whom we can only give comfort care. Tylenol and Ibuprofen, Icy Hot, eye drops and sunglasses are in big demand.  And the hats … oh my, everyone wants one. We brought over 300 but they are gone now. We had more to bring but didn’t have enough luggage space.

There were a lot of kids and adorable babies today. Hard to work when you just want to play with them or hold the babies!

We are very proud to be representatives of such a supportive, generous and caring parish. Thanks to all who have made this trip possible with donations and prayers.

Another busy day at the clinic

Editor’s note: Check this site for updates from the Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney parish in Bettendorf.

Day 3: Monday, January 21

By Ann Wester

The team worked so hard all day. In the past two days, we saw two Zika babies. Today’s baby was 16 months old and couldn’t even hold up his head. There really wasn’t anything we could do but a referral to a pediatric clinic. But the services that would help, such as speech and physical therapy, are almost impossible to obtain in Haiti.

We saw 350 patients today. I went to Saint-Marc to check out prices on some supplies and drugs. We were able to buy a few medications that we needed. We are seeing more scabies this time and needed more medicine for that.

Everyone looking forward to another day of clinic.

300 patients seen on first day

Editor’s note: Check this site for updates from the Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney parish in Bettendorf.

Day 2: Sunday, January 20

By Ann Wester

We started the day with Mass at 6:30. The music was wonderful and lively. It was great to be back in Haiti. I have hugged so many wonderful people today. Had breakfast and then the clinic started at 9. We have an awesome team again this year. Everyone works together so well. It is truly a joy to work with this team and to give assistance to our Haitian patients.

We had one lady in particular that touched the hearts of many of us. She was 46 and was very lethargic and in much pain. After assessment and discussion with the family, we found that she had terminal cancer. All we could do was comfort care. This was hard for those that were helping her.

The unofficial total for the day is 300 patients.

All looking forward to tomorrow.

Medical mission 2019

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Members of the Medical Mission team visit the chapel at St. Joseph’s Center in Gonaives.

Editor’s note: Check this site for updates from the Medical Mission team from St. John Vianney parish in Bettendorf.

Day 1: Saturday, January 19

By Ann Wester

We had a great visit to St Joseph’s center in Gonaives. Sister Renee showed us the facility. They have a beautiful school, kindergarten through 6th grade, and hope to add 7, 8, and 9.

Ann Wester

Ann Wester

They are building new classrooms for it. They also have a nutrition programs for malnourished babies age 6 months to 2 ½  years, which includes their moms. They are also building a sewing factory which will make T-shirts. It will employ 50 people, which would give good paying jobs to those in poverty.

This afternoon we met the new school principal at Our Lady of Fatima and discussed future plans for the school, which could include adding grades 7 and 8. We also discussed needs for the current school which include things like maps, globes and reference books.

We also set up the clinic and we are ready to go!

Mass at 6:30 tomorrow. And the clinic will start after. The team is so excited to start tomorrow. It will be so good to see many of our friends from last year.