(My actual Tuesday journal entry):
We drink lots of coffee here. More than I’m used to. Most people seem to drink several cups a day, or even a morning! It’s wonderful to have coffee on constant brew in the clinic staff lounge all through the day. (I’m used to it running out by mid-morning and debating if I should start another pot and how many people might drink it 🙂 ).
Anyway, it was a heavy-coffee Tuesday with lots of interesting patients! I met a local man who almost entirely lives off subsistence lifestyle–he told me of picking greens (best in the spring when they are young and tender), berries (he told me it’s not blueberry season anymore 😛 ha!), and now roots in the Fall. He told me that seal season is starting now as well, where they go out in the skiff that used to be umiaqs (see post) and use rifles to hunt seals for their meat, oil, fat, and skins. He has a bad knee, which I hope we can fix, so he can keep being active and connected. I had another patient who brought in a piece of whale blubber that she forgot in her purse. It looked like a fancy layered dessert. I’ve heard various descriptions of the flavor of these foods (of course everyone up here thinks they are delicacies!), and I’m curious to try it.
My hardest case was regarding this ethical issue: http://archpedi.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=481244.
I found out that there is no fluoride in the drinking water here. I have some friends who would be delighted at this news. I personally don’t think all the research points to fluoride to blame for so many ills and for intentional poisoning of society. But I will add in a new talking point that I’ve never really had to address before!
I had a great lunch with a medical student who is super passionate about underserved medicine! He used to work on the medevacs here, and then went to med school! It’s always refreshing to have really great conversations about the things you love. 🙂
Here’s some pics of the old hospital (moved 3/2013 to the current building):
Then tonight a stream of text messages and voice messages just came in on my phone! I was wondering why I hadn’t heard from anyone in a while! My phone (Verizon) is super unreliable, but my AT&T sim card with “two-day” shipping still hasn’t arrived…two weeks later.