Friday, June 1, 2007

Day 12

It was off to an early start today! We all had to be ready to leave the villas at 6:30am. Our first stop was at the only children’s hospital in Panama, Hospital Del Nino. The hospital cared for children of all ages up to fourteen (whereas in the U.S it is age 18 and sometimes up to 21 depending on the Physician). It included many specialty areas and units such as oncology, burns, ICU, PACU, and dialysis. It also had an emergency and surgery room, and a place for outpatient care. We saw babies and children under all types of conditions: on respirators, with NG tubes, under incubators and ultraviolet light, and with trachs. I think the favored area was where the premature babies were because a few people actually got to pick the babies up and play with them. One thing that was interesting to learn about the hospital was that it had a school area located in it because some of the children that received dialysis had been living there for up to five years. The nurses said that the children actually became like part of their family because their own family may only get to visit every 6 months or once a year (because of distance, money, or other problems).
Our next stop was at the Nursing Association of Panama. Here we received a quick presentation on the association and some refreshments to revive us. To end the presentation our speaker sang for us. I find people in Panama to be a lot more open than people in the US.
Now, back at the villas, some are sleeping, exercising, reading, or working on projects. As for tonight our plans are dinner and maybe a movie at the mall! It should be our first adventure with taxis here so wish us luck.


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