Recent trip to Cobsan, Guatemala

03 Dec 2014 10:43 AM | Deleted user

Well, a group of 4 of us made it safely to a town in northern Guatemala.  Coban boasts a population of 47,000 people and is Guatemala's 15th largest city.  It is a 4 hour auto ride from Guatemala City.  This time of year, the days are in the low 70's (F) and the nights are about 50.  It rains almost every day. 


The team consisted of myself, Sandra Calderon from Inova in Fairfax, VA, Brian Whelan from the Remi Group in Charlotte, and Heidi Gaines, a student at Jefferson College in Missouri.  Our trip was funded by The Heineman Foundation of Charlotte, which had shipped a container of equipment, furniture and supplies for us to unload and install.


We traveled over the weekend and came to the hospital Monday morning. After meeting with the hospital's executive director, we began work.  Thanks to many contributions from many sources, we were able to install 17 physiological monitors in ICU, NICU and pediatrics.  We also set up and distributed many infant bassinets other assorted equipment.  As we went through the week, we made note of broken equipment (it all seemed broken).  Brian fixed two (the only two) x-ray rooms in the ER, along with their only film processor.  We calibrated infant and pediatric scales, repaired infusion pumps, and checked out many devices in surgery, laboratory and central processing.  We worked on several broken bulk sterilizers in central, but have an open work order to obtain door gaskets for them. (They are going to cost about $400.00 for the gaskets and spares).  We also need to acquire a cutting wheel for a rotary fabric cutter, which is used to cut fabric into bandages.  The 9 cm wheel has been worn down to about 7 cm and it won't even cut.  (I found a replacement in New Zealand, for a cost to BWOB of $57.00)


There is another trip planned in January.  Right now, it is only for a single BMET.  There is a second container of equipment and a lot of started repairs to complete.


Thanks to all who sent supplies, tools, mounts, hardware and money to BWOB.  We have depleted our stocks, so we need more of everything, especially money.  We are spending 100% of all donations on items to go overseas. There is no overhead or handling charge, so all of your donations are used to help Biomeds across the sea.


Pat Lynch    12/3/2014

© BMETDonation
Powered by Wild Apricot. Try our all-in-one platform for easy membership management