[medical trip]

[medical trip]

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I have spent this past Saturday with my mother and our family friends in Western Ukraine. We went there on a medical trip to offer free medical consultation (as well as quick tests / consultation) to people in Berezna Volya, a little village of about 300 people. We have a Nazarene Church there and our cooperation with them started 16 years ago.

We left Kyiv at 1:30AM on Saturday and arrived around 8:30AM. Quick (but incredibly delicious because the food was cooked with love by our gracious host) breakfast  also included a birthday cake since it was one of the team member’s, Lev, birthday. When we have discussed the possible dates for our trip, this was the only Saturday when everyone was free… so Lev sacrificed his birthday for the trip. (I don’t think he regretted it much 🙂 ).

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At 9:30AM we sent our tired driver to get some rest (since we were to leave in the evening) and the rest of us went to the village’s medical center. The name sounds good – a medical center – but in reality it’s just a house where the nurse can take care of sick people. There is no doctor in the village and no drug store.

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My Daniel rabbit became quite popular as a face of the trip 🙂

Once people came, they were given a plastic cup to fill up for tests and we wrote down their basic information – name and age. In addition, their blood pressure was measured right away. Since most of those who came were elderly people, many had high blood pressure problems.

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At the registration desk, tests results were written down. The tests we did: blood sugar and urine. Over the years, these quick but reliable tests have proved to be indispensable in properly diagnosing and helping people.

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There is a hospital in a town nearby, but it requires a bus ride and those are not frequent. Besides, since most people are elderly, it is hard for them to go anywhere.

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Our most-valued doctors – Dr. Alexander Pristupiuk and Dr. Mariana Naumova.

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Both have received numerous awards as doctors, both are professors at the Kyiv’s Medical University, and both volunteer on regular basis offering medical help, cooperating with various organizations throughout Ukraine. They have three kids all of whom are also doctors and could join us for this trip.

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Another test that we had available was Doppler ultrasound that uses reflected sound waves to evaluate blood as it flows through a blood vessel.

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Discussing the day’s events as they wait for their turn.

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The final stop for the patients was our make-shift “drug store” where people could get medicine the doctors prescribed for free. We had most of the common medicines with us because we have been here enough times to know what kind of problems people are having, but some medicine people would have to get themselves (mostly some special antibiotics).

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After a brief lunch, we had some time to take pictures, so I was happy to finally get a new picture with mom.

I did not realize that she’s this much shorter than me 😀

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Two families. We have been friends for over 20 years and we were among the first people in our Church when the Nazarene movement started in Ukraine.

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Our entire team. In the middle, the lady in black jacket is Lubov Pavlovna – the local school’s principal who has been the most gracious host for us as well as organizer.

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We left the Berezna Volya village at 5PM and arrived back in Kyiv at 1AM. It was one long day – but a good one 🙂

  • Loved reading this sis. Makes me want to meet you even more. Tell short stuff (I mean your mom) to make a way for you to get over here. BTW: Jo and I are about like that. She barely hits my arm pit if that. I am 6’5″. She is barely 5’3″. LOL Seriously, this is fantastic!

    • Heh, she doesn’t mind me going over there, but I make three times more than she does… (even though I work at non-profit organization)…

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