UA-63899747-1 Liberia Day 4 – Last Day of Lecture – Nzinga Harrison, MD
Liberia Day 3 – Tuesday
July 10, 2013
Liberia Day 5- First Day of Clinicals
July 12, 2013

Well, I survived Tuesday night despite the blue drink's best attempt to kill me.  I woke up Wednesday morning feeling just fine and got the day started on the right foot.  Endsley on the other hand, ate something for dinner that took her out.  She came to breakfast looking like a ghost, and it quickly became clear that she would be spending her day in the bathroom, rather than at work.  (I guess ultimately, that blue drink saved me from whatever Endsley had since I was too sick to eat dinner).   So, she went back to her room, and I went off to teach.  Following the normal rush hour thrill, I arrived at JFK Medical Center for Day 3 -- the last day of lectures.  The students were very concerned about Endsley, which was so nice.  And one made a joke that she must have been bitten by a Liberian mosquito.  We laughed and laughed, because we all knew that definitely was not what was making her sick.  So, we got the day started -- we did question review for the test, and learned all about relapse prevention -- whereas yesterday was concentrated on biological interventions, today focused on psychosocial interventions and learning to treat addiction as the individual, family, community and country illness that it is.  As usual, the students were eager to share their experiences, and full of ideas for how to advocate, start AA/NA meetings and ready to make a difference in their patient's lives.

Rodney, the hospital administrator, gave me a tour of the JFK hospital, which was very interesting.  We saw the pharmacy, maternity ward, pediatric ward, telemedicine room where they have international doctors conduct training for the interns and residents they have rotating from the states.  Our final stop was in the doctor's cafeteria where we had Ms. Peabody's delicious home cooking.  Although the sign said lunch 12-1:30, we arrived at 12:25 to find it still closed.  Rodney calmly walked through the back of the kitchen and asked them to open.  The food was prepared and ready to go, they just had not set it out.  So, at his request they set it out and we ate -- the Liberian way -- no stress!  It was fish in red sauce with mixed vegetables and rice.  Finished off with a delicious corn muffin that tasted like it had ginger and cinnamon in it.  I was so full, I could have gone right to sleep!

After lunch, I taught the students how to help a patient complete a relapse prevention plan and gave them the post-test for the course.  I was able to grade their post-tests and return them on the spot.  The class improved its average pre-test score from 45% to an average post-test score of 90%.  Now that is incredible!  After the post-test, we all took pictures and gave hugs.  It was a wonderful feeling.  We all realized what we had been able to accomplish together and they felt empowered to go out and start making a difference in the clinic.

So, after work, I came home to check on Endsley, who was doing much better.  She had dropped her casper ways, and had a little bit more color in her face.  We decided to go to the hotel next door for dinner.  I ordered a shrimp/avocado salad which was very good, save the mountain of identified type of salad dressing on top.  Of course, I took my last bite of shrimp and just as I chewed and swallowed it, it tasted spoiled.  Somehow, I still haven't gotten sick -- God bless my hydrochloric acid!

After a great 30 minute Skype call with the family, I was off to sleep so that we could go to clinicals on Thursday morning.

Of course Day 4 pictures have been added to the Google Photo Album:

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