By Ryan Van Nostrand
This week was an interesting week. During clinic days there were a number of good ultrasound teaching cases including a DVT US which was positive. There was a unique opportunity to go the regional hospital in Linden which is a mining town and more resource poor in terms of medical care.
By Jamie Robinson
The last 2 weeks have been a whirlwind. From the moment I saw the sign with my name held by the friendliest driver I’ve ever had at the airport in Nairobi all I have seen are smiles. Every person I have encountered has been nothing but kind and welcoming.
This week, the U.S. Senate is expected to make some serious decisions on funding levels for global health programs. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is even on the key subcommittee. Such foreign assistance — less than one percent of the total U.S. budget — was cut by 32 percent in President Donald Trump’s first budget request.
As women, sometimes we can be consumed with the needs of all the people right before us in our homes and communities. Yet, there is a longing in each of us to be part of something bigger than ourselves. We experience empathy and concern for others, our neighbors, both near and far.
The past month taking care of patients, teaching, and learning from my colleagues in the Accident and Emergency Department at the Georgetown Public Hospital in Guyana has been a wonderful experience, as always. I have learned a great deal, and I have also had the opportunity to teach in a variety of settings, which has been very gratifying. I never leave here not in awe of the great work these physicians do with the limited resources they have available. I also rarely leave without a memory of some patient that we were not able to help as much as I would have liked due to these limitations.
Hi Ryan Van Nostrand here in Georgetown, Guyana. This is the end of my second week and it has been an educational and enjoyable experience working in the GPHC. Over the last two weeks I have been able to gain an insight to the difficulties and similarities between medicine in the US and Guyana. It has been a pleasure to work with the doctors and staff in the Emergency Department and I have really enjoyed being able to teach and learn from the residents here.
This is now my third trip to Guyana to work at Georgetown Public hospital, fondly referred to as GPHC, in the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E). Each trip has been eye-opening, motivating, inspirational, at times frustrating and heart wrenching, and always immensely rewarding. I am fortunate to be the current Global Health Emergency Medicine Fellow at Vanderbilt, meaning I will spend much of my time this year working in Guyana.
I am sitting on the terrace of my hotel in Kathmandu, sipping spicy masala tea and looking out at the cityscape for the last time. Below me, the pudgy, fresh-faced toddlers of affluent Nepalis learn to swim in the crystal-clear swimming pool, a far cry from the muddy, leech-infested floodwaters of the nation’s rivers and lakes. The all-seeing eyes of the Boudhanath stupa, the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside of those in Tibet, gaze placidly down at me from their towering perch above Kathmandu, watching over the nation. In the distance, somewhat obscured by the dust and smog of the capital city, I can see the Himalayan foothills, their dark, untamed beauty seductive in its wildness. I think of my ten SBA students, scattered now throughout isolated villages in those very mountains, providing contraception services and prenatal care and delivering babies in remote clinics. I offer up a silent prayer for them, and for the women, children, and families they are serving.
There is no period more critical in a child’s development than its first few months of life, which is why so much attention is paid to what the mother, and the child, eats during that time. Nutritionists like to call it the “golden window” — the slim period of time where a child, if he gets the right nutrients, can set out on a healthy path, or, if he doesn’t, risks irreversible stunting and developmental delays. “Eighty percent of the brain development happens in the first 1,000 days of a child’s life, starting from conception,” says nutritionist Sanjay Kumar Das.

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