- This year of 2018 began with three special gifts to Samuel Seidu Memorial Health Center. In the last two years, the clinic has been blessed with not one but two dedicated community health nurses. These two young women are tasked with routine, monthly visits to their assigned villages to immunize all children under 5 years of age. They also make appropriate entries into the Child Health Record. They offer health education to mothers and caregivers. Their work has been hampered because they did not have transportation to their assigned villages. Another clinic staff member with a motorbike would have to stop work and transport them. Now, through a special gift, a motorbike has been purchased for this ministry. Pray for safety on our dirt roads as the nurses travel to the villages to provide life saving vaccines to our children. Here is a picture of one of the community health nurses showing her abilities on the new motorbike.
That was not the only motorbike purchased for some of the clinic staff. The clinic welcomed two former employees back from their years of study at a nursing program in a school in the Brong Ahafo Region to the south. As recipients of clinic scholarship funds, they returned to work at Samuel Seidu. Jacob and Paul are “home-grown”. That is they grew up in a village just a few miles from Samuel Seidu Memorial Health Center. They also attend the Baptist Church in that village. There was no space to house them on the clinic campus and the young men were living in their home village. They had no transportation to get to work. A gift was given for each of these young men to purchase a motorbike of their choosing. Their bikes are theirs to use to get to work and for personal use. Pray that Paul and Jacob will grow in knowledge and ability in their nursing profession and will become permanent staff at the clinic.* CLINIC COMMITTEE TAKES ON MORE RESPONSIBILITY Since Cathy Bristol, Baptist Mid-Mission missionary nurse, left Samuel Seidu Memorial Clinic in Baayiri, Upper West Region of Ghana, the national executive committee has been in charge of keeping the clinic ministry going.
Pastor David, Sister Faith, and Pastor James have taken on the many challenges of keeping, this small, rural medical outreach going. Pastor David, as the clinic administrator, is at the clinic on a daily basis and works with a group of young health care workers. Some have come to the clinic by way of assignment through the district health directorate, two young men are our scholarship recipients and have returned to the clinic after finishing their training as professional nurses, and finally several of the workers are local Christians trained at the clinic and faithful to the ministry for close to 20 years. Simon is a local young person who has been a valuable member of the staff since 1998 and proven himself to be faithful and caring. He is both a knowledgeable dispenser and a good lab assistant. Jacob, sitting at the desk in the admitting room, is one of our scholarship students and a recent nurse graduate. Two community health nurses added to the staff have also added to the clinic outreach as they travel to 3 area village to immunize the children under 5 years of age and teach health lessons to the mothers. A Christian doctor (sited on the left) donates his time two week-ends each month to come out to the clinic and see patients from the local community.
Good things are happening! Keep Pastor David and the national executive committee in your prayers!
In June 2016, missionary nurse, Cathy Bristol, departed for the United States.As she will not longer be in residency at the clinic, Baptist Mid-Missions of Ghana has appointed a national medical committee.
In October 2015, our local District Health Director posted a staff midwife to Samuel Seidu Memorial Health Center. (See Praise and Prayer for more on this item.)
Spring and fall is the usual time for the NATIONAL IMMUNIZATION AGAINST POLIOMYELITIS. For quite a few years now Ghana has joined with other African countries in cooperation with the W.H.O. and its international partners to aggressively eradicate poliomyelitis from the African continent. We not only administer the regular, routine immunizations given to all children under five years of age at our clinic, but the oral polio vaccine is given out to all children under five in a massive, nation wide campaign during March and April each year. The procedure is shared below.
Though Samuel Seidu Memorial Clinic is a mission outreach and not a government facility, we have always cooperated and participated in the campaigns each year.
Usually, some of the vaccine is stored in our solar vaccine refrigerator. The “foot soldiers” of these campaigns are village volunteers who walk or ride bikes or go with motorbikes to each and every house in every village and drop the polio vaccine into the mouths of waiting children.
The volunteers would congregate at the clinic in the early morning hours to receive their portable vaccine carrier, get their supplies—genetian violet paint to mark the finger of each children receiving the vaccine; chalk to mark the homes visited; and tally sheets. The community health nurses and at least one of my nursing assistants would act as the supervisors. They would move by motor bike around their assigned areas checking on the volunteers and bring more supplies where needed.
The approach of going “door to door” to capture each and every child in the community seems very effective. One of these times, I need to put a pedometer around the waist of a village volunteer and see how many miles they travel in one day of the campaign. They always seem enthusiastic and tireless! Here are some pictures of the campaign from last year.
Volunteers, having received their vaccines, prepare to leave for their village assignments.
The portable vaccine carrier: four frozen ice packs inside the box keep vaccine vials cold all day