Help­ing out in Ro­ma­nia

Nurse’s time car­ing for cleft lip kids

The Galloway News - - DISTRICT NEWS - Glen­lochar SWI

Vanessa Martin and hus­band John spoke about nurs­ing in Ro­ma­nia from 1996 to 2013.

Vanessa was a man­ager in an NHS hospi­tal in the plas­tic surgery unit and her spe­cial­ity ser­vice was car­ing for chil­dren with cleft lip and palate.

A Bri­tish sur­gi­cal team was sent to Spi­talul de Copii, a chil­dren’s hospi­tal in cen­tral Ro­ma­nia, and Vanessa was asked to go with them and be re­spon­si­ble for post-op­er­a­tive care.

She was given leave from her post for two weeks each year. The sur­geon and anaes­thetist were there for one week and Vanessa stayed an ex­tra seven days to en­sure the nurses and moth­ers of the chil­dren who had been op­er­ated on un­der­stood how to care for them.

John gave a vis­ual pre­sen­ta­tion to ac­com­pany the talk. From the slides, mem­bers were able to see the vil­lage, con­di­tions in the hospi­tal and many pho­to­graphs of the chil­dren.

The sur­geon was skilled and the dif­fer­ence in the child’s ap­pear­ance amaz­ing. Only the mother could stay in the hospi­tal and had to sleep in the same bed as their child.

Chil­dren from a nearby or­phan­age were also treated. Vanessa en­joyed her time there im­mensely, work­ing with the staff and teach­ing them care as they did not re­ceive any for­mal train­ing as Bri­tish nurses do.

Jean Young thanked Vanessa and John for giv­ing mem­bers an in­sight to cleft lip and palate and about how the treat­ment for this dis­fig­ur­ing con­di­tion can make such a dif­fer­ence to a child’s life.

Tea was then served, af­ter which the busi­ness part of the evening took place.

Names were taken for an evening at Dal­beat­tie on Novem­ber 9, a trip to head­quar­ters on Novem­ber 29, the team for the Ru­ra­lympics and the Christ­mas din­ner.

Vot­ing pa­pers were handed out and a few ar­ti­cles handed in for the shoe boxes. Money was col­lected for the an­nual sub­scrip­tion for the SWI mag­a­zine be­fore Jean closed the meet­ing.

The com­pe­ti­tion re­sults were an­nounced as fol­lows:

Fruit loaf: 1 Chris­tine Sut­cliffe; 2 Sarah Eade; 3 Mar­garet Gor­don.

Pretty plate: 1 Agnes Gor­don; 2 Irene Henry; 3 Ann Brooks; 4 Jean Young.

Flower: 1 Chris­tine Sut­cliffe; 2 Jen­nifer Thom; 3 Linda Gor­don.

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