Interesting fact….gravity has the same affect in Uganda as it does in the rest of the world.
Case & point, meet Kiyingi Ali. Ali is like most 10 year old boys, running around playing futbol and climbing trees. On the day we met Ali he had been craving some jackfruit, the only problem on this day was gravity won. Ali fell from the jackfruit tree and inured his wrist. When I examined it, his hand and fingers were swollen and it was painful to the touch.
I put it in a splint; I used a SAM splint for all my EMS people out there! I decided we would leave it splinted and I would re-evaluate in two days when we returned to the village.
When we came back his wrist still had swelling, although it had gone done a bit, and it was still painful to the touch. We decided it was time to take him into town and get it X-rayed. The only problem was his mom was working in the fields and could not leave her work to go with us into town. This is where the Chairman of the Village stepped in. The Chairmen is the elected official in each village that is in charge of all things within the village. Unfortunately many of the Chairman and other elected officials are corrupt and only looking out for themselves and their wallets. Luckily there are a few exceptions. This Chairman is a very good man and truly cares about his village. Since Ali’s mother could not leave work, the Chairman loaded up in the vehicle with us to take Ali into town for an X-ray.
When we arrived at the clinic it took about 20 minutes and cost $8 to get an X-ray and an evaluation. $8!! That makes me question the high cost of medical care in the US (but that is a whole other blog). The good news is there was no break! I was very surprised, but relieved. What 10-year-old wants to be in a cast for 4-6 weeks?
After his X-ray we were able to get some lunch for Ali and the Chairman and arranged for transport back to the village. Seeing the compassion of the chairman is just one of the many reasons that we are thankful and blessed to work in this village. Hopefully we can share more stories with happy endings like this one.