Day 3 - Dignity

Posted on: 02/06/2017

Author: Bookhart, Wingard

Announcements and devotions began 30 minutes earlier today. The Biblical creation story affirms our dignity as humans are made in the image of God--original blessedness--we are called by God "very good". Surgeries began today and an overriding thought was recognizing our patient's dignity before, during and after their respective surgery. The team arrived at the hospital before 8:00 am and began to prepare for the upcoming surgeries. The patients and their respective families were already at the hospital (as they had stayed overnight on the property) and were waiting for us. Pastor Edwin prayed with and for each patient before they left for surgery. Just as in the United States, each patient was interviewed by a member of the anesthesia team, which included his/her name, reason for the surgery, known allergies, etc. Each patient also signed a consent form. Before leaving the anesthesia room, the patient would also have an IV started. Meanwhile, the surgery personnel were setting up the operating room. When appropriate, the patient would walk down the hall and be greeted by the operating team, where again he/she would be interviewed. Medical staff in three operating rooms were performing surgeries concurrently throughout the day. Before surgery commenced, the lead surgeon would perform a "pause". Before any incisions were made, the entire operating room would hear the name of the patient and what surgery was about to be performed. The utmost care was given to each patient throughout the surgery. A count of each item used during surgery (gauze pads, sharps, suture needles, etc.) was recorded. Following surgery those same items were counted to ensure that the number at the end of the surgery matched the number during surgery. After surgery, each patient was returned to the post-op room and observed for at least an hour, then if suitable criteria were met, they were transferred to the appropriate overnight facility. The patients will be seen by the surgeon in the morning and released (some patients came in a group and will be returning home with that group). Today's surgery tally: 3 hysterectomies, 4 cholecystectomies (removal of gall bladder, all done laparoscopically) and 4 herniaplasties.