December ended a year of growth for us at Camotan Clinic. We were able to hire some new staff (more on them later) and we also hosted Dr. Robert Strohecker and John Krosnar who worked hard both seeing patients and building new beds for our clinic.
John Krosnar building bunk beds for the bedrooms in the clinic.
Dr. Robert Strohecker has been down before, seeing patients for vision care (he is an optometrist). We were able to use him both for eye exams and some much needed manual labor. As some of you know, we have been slowly building out our clinic to include bedrooms. Some of our staff works intermittently at the clinic, traveling from different parts of Guatemala (and the US!) to the clinic for a week or more of work then returning to their regular jobs. During this time, they need a safe place to stay. We have slowly been equipping the clinic to make this possible.
In addition to bunk beds for the rooms in our clinic, we built a bed for an old friend of ours, Juan. Juan’s story goes back many years when he was accidentally electrocuted and lost his arms. Since then, one of our partner organizations, Kairos Ministries along with doctor Mark Speake have supported Juan. When he needed complex surgeries two years ago, Kairos and Dr. Speake brought Juan to the US to have his surgeries that saved his life. So, we made Juan a bed as well. He lives up on the mountain with his family. We built the bed at the clinic, disassembled it then took it to the mountain. Obviously as you can see, for him, a bed makes life much easier than sleeping on the floor.
Juan and his new bed
Of course there were a lot of patients seen in the clinic. Here one of our new nurses Liz is working in the clinic filling a prescription for a patient. From this picture you can see how in the clinic we are not just the doctor’s office but the pharmacy as well. Patients are seen, diagnosed, charted, meds given, follow up or labs arranged and more.
Of course, Dr. Toledo continues to be a vital part of the clinic. She gives much of her time to work in the clinic. Dr. Toledo has a private practice in Guatemala City but takes at least a week every month away from her busy private practice to donate care to the people of Camotan and the surrounding mountains. She also spends a lot of time arranging dental follow up, acquiring grants, and managing the clinic itself. Without her, the clinic would not function.
Dr. Toledo spending time educating a patient
Thank you for reading. And Happy New Year!