2018 Medical Mission Trips
For those who are not familiar with our July mission team's favorite phrase, per the online Urban Dictionary, these words are: "an expression that is short for: 1. I got your back. 2. I got you covered / protected." If this was said once, it was said hundreds of times by the 15 team members to one another, over our 9 days of traveling, serving, working, playing, and praising God together. This team comprised of 5 medical professionals and 10 students ranging from High School to Medical School was all about helping and learning from one another. Each and every of the 440 patients seen in The MIVO Orthopedique Centre, along with their family members, felt this same, overriding sentiment.
The energy and exuberance of this team infiltrated every aspect of our time together. With a core focus on teaching and learning for teammates interested in a healthcare profession, our patients were often greeted with an exam roomful of smiles, touches, and questions. We were thankful that the majority of Haitian patients and families never appeared to mind the extra time taken during their exams or surgical preparations to teach others. While over 15 much-needed surgeries were performed by Dr. Etienne, assistants were not in short supply. Hands on experiences were offered with supervision by the seasoned team members ...... Wherever a procedure or injection such as an IV start, an intra-articular steroid joint injection, or wound debridement was needed, it was a team approach.
As mothers were examined, their children were attended to by our team. Hands were held and children were sung to in the OR during surgery. Prior to surgery, when prayers for safety and healing were to be sent heavenward, everyone was in praying mode. How heartwarming to see 4 to 5 team members in prayer surrounding a frightened young man prior to thumb surgery! If there was a durable medical equipment need or orthotic need, special adaptations were made to existing pieces / parts by this innovative crew. If a specific supply need occurred, it was all hands-on-deck to find what we needed.
Several stroke patients, who were either carried in or assisted by family members, walked out of the clinic of their own ability. Many patients were instructed on walker or crutch use and were taught strengthening / range of motion exercises. One specific lady who came in with a cane on one side and her husband on the other for support, (due to the inability to use one arm and one leg), walked out totally on her own power. Dr. Etienne first examined the lady and then prayed with her and her husband for total healing and restoration of her affected arm and leg. After claiming and accepting her miraculous healing by FAITH, she began to lift arms upward saying/shouting "Hallelujah!" in response to the prayers. We, at MIVO, believe in God's healing power through His divine intervention, be it through His provision of equipment, supplies, medications and caregivers or through His ability to perform immediate healing miracles when asked to do so by His faithful servants . This is one example of God’s miraculous intervention when the medical staff cannot use science to explain what happens.
The highlights, the "I gotchu!" moments and the true heavenly covering of our God Almighty are too many to mention. May those who provided the care and for those who received this care during our time in L'Estere continue to give God the glory for every moment experienced as we came together to bring hope and healing to our neighbors and loved ones in Haiti! May we be forever changed in Jesus' name!
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