Monday, May 7, 2012

36 hours of clinic at the Hospital General...

We had plenty of opportunities to observe and respond to the needs of our patients and we tried to address them to the best of our abilities, considering the circumstances. There were last minute changes to where we could set up the additional three units. The hospital had two very old dental chairs in the clinic that we could use. Dr. Christian, the resident dentist happily gave up the room for us for the next three and a half days. Due to recent construction, the door leading to the dental clinic is now completely plastered over so the only access from the main corridor is through the vaccination room for babies. It was a challenge but everyone was very accommodating. We were able to find two lounge chairs and luckily there was already a long bed-like piece of furniture that we converted into another dental unit to serve all five students.

The students were resourceful, adaptable, and enthusiastic. At the end of the clinic days, we were all exhausted from the heat and the work provided. We saw a myriad of cases from simple to very complex periodontal health issues, some pathology such as abscesses, tissue erosion, and fibroma-type lesions. We screened and provided fluoride varnish treatment on children who were  brought there by their parents. This made us happy as this was an indication of the value that the parents placed on their children's oral health.

We saw many new patients, as well as returning ones from our previous field schools. Several were from out of town and as far away as 50 miles. We saw improvement in many of the returning ones and frustration that the field school program was their only option for any continuing care. Although there is evidence of improvement, the risk for periodontal problems continues to be high.

We had Sunday off but this Monday, we will set up for our 5 ten-hour clinic days at Entreamigos. 

The first day at the Hospital General called for our resourcefulness, as we organized to
create three makeshift patient chairs.
Katie putting together her unit.
With help from Regina, one of our clinical interpreters,  our students created a sign welcoming all to our clinic.
Glades helping with the set-up.
Coreen is never far away from her purse, even at set-up time. ;-)
Last minute briefing from Glades to Leandra.
While waiting for our first patients, we took advantage of handing out baby toothbrushes and information packet to new parents as they waited to get their babies vaccinated.
Father and child during screening.

Glades interpreting for Michelle as the new parents looked on.

Ada holding our sterilization system. Turns out that we were able to use the clinics sterilization unit also.

Several parents brought their children in for a check-up. We did not turn any child away.

Meryl and her first patient at the hospital.
Our focus was on education.

It was tough to maintain good ergonomics.

Leandra trying very hard to maintain good form, but where is her client's bib?

Time for paperwork.

Michelle and Coreen occupied the only two dental chairs in the hospital clinic.

More paperwork.

We also welcomed the four-legged kind. "Jacko" was particularly friendly.
Another busy morning. A family of four came all at once.
The one-hour scheduled lunch became 30 minute lunches. Luckily, the place across the street serves great, affordable, and fast food!
Marichuy, a wonderful nurse at the hospital checking up on us.

We gave everyone in the waiting area toothbrushes, toothpastes, and information packet.

A Huichol woman named Teresa was Meryl's patient today.

Katie reviewing health history while Leandra waits for her patient.

Great smile.

July explaining the health history form while Meryl looks on.

"Yes, I give Meryl permission to work on me."

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