Notes from the OR – Ethiopia 2017
A day in the OR.
Evan Keil, CSI Ethiopia team member
Transitioning from a nation of abundance to Ethiopia has not been easy. We are performing around 35 surgeries over 4.5 days. To accomplish this, many things are needed. At the forefront – collaboration and fluidity. These two stand out the most when walking around our surgical ward. Working through challenges with oxygen tanks, sterilization techniques, anesthesia, electrocauteries, recovery room beds and more, our dedicated team has found a way.
Each surgical day, the process for the patients begins in the pre-op room. Once cleared here by one of our pediatricians and our nursing staff, the patient is brought into the OR. From here, our OR nurses and anesthesia staff take over. They ensure that the patient’s vitals are stable and do the final preparations for surgery. Enter the surgeons: Dr. Siva Chinnadurai and Dr. John Robitschek (with their first names conveniently labeled with tape on their foreheads) begin their process. With headlamps glowing, gloves on, 15 blade in hand and a sterile field, the first cut is made. With decades of experience between them, these surgeries could be done fairly quickly. However, speedy procedures is not the focus for CSI.
At the core of our mission statement is promoting “self-sufficiency through professional training and support.” As mentioned in previous posts, four Ethiopian doctors (Drs. Wudie, Teshome, Birara and Sintayehu) are receiving expert training this week with the hope that they become confident enough to perform ENT surgeries that come through their doors. Each of these doctors come from different clinical backgrounds and thus require different training – something that our two surgeons have been addressing with each new day. They have each been making a lot of progress, and we still have two full days of surgery to go.
Check out all our trip photos here!