Aug 13, 2018

Moving Forward

Hope your summer is going well!

We are looking forward to a productive Fall of 2018 as the Palliative Care program at AMPATH continues to grow and assist our Kenyan colleagues in the wonderful work they do. 

September will be a busy month with four physicians from North American on ground. Dr. Lindsay Dow from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine will return. Her focus will be on educating physicians, nurses and staff on communicating difficult news with compassion, honesty, and support. She will be joined by the first Palliative Medicine Fellow from Mount Sinai to participate in the Eldoret program as part of their education. I will be returning as well - with my boss! Dr. Robert Stone is head of the Palliative Care program at Indiana University Health Bloomington Hospital. Rob is a specialist in Emergency Medicine and after almost 30 years as head of Bloomington Hospital Emergency Department decided to retool and gained his board certification in Palliative Medicine. He has also had a long affiliation with the IU Health Hospice, serving as co-medical director. His breadth of experience and passion for palliative care will be most welcome. 

With all the clinical help, I plan on working with Drs. Chite Asirwa and Millicent Korir in developing the Pallaitive Care certification program with the goal of accepting the first class in 2019. It will be a lot of work to get the program going will aim to provide physicians, nurses and clinical officers with a one year intensive exposure to hospice and palliative care. 

Thanks everyone for your continued support!

Jun 18, 2018

Charles Overcomes HIV

I wish you could all join me at the Turbo Clinic on one of my Friday visits.  You'd probably get to meet Charles, a wonderful young man I enjoy seeing. 

Charles came to the clinic with HIV that was ravaging his physical and mental health.  He was just 45 kilos in his mid-teens. He wouldn't talk to anyone at the clinic and refused to take his medicine. He had no hope. 

One day I said to him: "Charles, if I could get you to take your medicine and get back to school, I might be able to bring you over a laptop the next time I'm in the US." 

Charles now has an undectable HIV load and is up to 60 kilos.  He's finishing his second year in high school and using that laptop everyday. 

May 16, 2018

What Rafiki Means to our Patients

Dear Friends,

Thank you for all your support of The Rafiki Center of Excellence in Adolescent Care. Rafiki means friend in Swahili, and it reflects our commitment to a safe and adolescent-friendly clinic. The clinic has now been running for more than a year and we want to give you a glimpse of what your support gives our patients and the friendliness it provides.

Our adolescents shared these statements about what the clinic means to them:

  • “I see Rafiki clinic as a safe haven for adolescents and young people”
  • “The clinic stands out as a center of excellence in HIV management, access to information, and a rehabilitative center for the young people who explore on their talents and find mentorship on how to live a positive life free from stigmatization and discrimination.”
  • “What I love the most about Rafiki is the flexibility of the staff with the aim of assisting the young people without judging them”
  • “Adolescents can access services without discrimination”
  • “Confidentiality of every client’s information is what I love most about Rafiki. There are many different activities at Rafiki so no one really knows of the health issues the adolescent is facing. They can access care without any of their peers branding them as infected.”

Without your support, our adolescents would not have had this safe and friendly space to access the care they need and deserve. Thank you for all that you have done for the clinic!

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