Saturday, August 13, 2011

A long walk for Medical Help!

Friends and Family,
Friday morning early a young married man of 26 years arrived at the clinic doorstep, strapped to a chair, carried by his father and brother. They live in a remote village, high in the mountains, with only twenty families. This village would be one of the original Mayan mountain villages. The family desperate to see their son cured carried him in the chair for four hours then went in the back of a truck for twenty minutes to our clinic. There is no medical help or pharmacy where they live. They had heard of our clinic through a health promotor that worked in our Medicinal Plant clinic many years ago. Diego, had fever for over ten days with only tylenol tablets for relief.

Transportation and roads have definitely improved over the years. Most villages do have roads and many pickups and cars. Prosperity for purchase of vehicles and better homes is related to migration of undocumented men to the United States who managed to send money home or returned with savings to improve their lives here. There are, however, some villages isolated from roads and electricity yet.

The town of Santo Tomas now has an ambulance for the community and our clinic utilizes this valuable service. Years ago many patients arrived strapped to chairs and carried in to our parish clinic, mostly chronic illness that had gone untreated. So it was an unusual happening when Diego arrived for consult to our clinic, strapped to a chair, carried by his father. Our doctor ordered lab tests, hidration, and medications. The patient and family agreed to stay over night. Lab results did not give a definite diagnosis and we were hoping Diego would agree to stay the weekend so we obtain further diagnostic tests. His Dengue test was negative but this disease often does not manifest positive for some days, and the doctor had wanted to follow up. The patient wanted to go home to his family; he left this morning stronger, without fever for 24 hours. We provided antibiotic injections and other medications if the fever should return. Another change in society is cell phones. the brother did provide me his number and the doctor will follow up by phone on Monday. They agreed to return if his symptoms of fever return. Diego walked out of the clinic and down the road with his brother carrying the empty chair. We were glad we were able to priovide his care in our clinic. Thank You for your donations who assist us to provide medical care at minimal cost and when necessary free of charge. Have a good day!

A photo of Diego, his father and brother and when they departed from the clinic, walking down our road, now carrying the chair.

Send donation on line at or
send to
Guatemala Mission
Diocese of Helena
PO Box 1729
Helena, MT
Note for Clinica Maxena.