Nurse Internal Clinic - from Jul 6, 2015 - 1 job for 13 months in NPH Guatemala.
The internal clinic serves the children, staff and volunteers of the orphanage. Each home has a different arrangement with a local community doctor or a permanent clinician. In the event that a doctor is not on the premises, the nurses are the primary medical assistance for any accidents or medications that are needed. The clinic is open 24 hours a day to serve the needs of the children at all times. The nurses take turns spending the night in the clinic and working in the day. If there are no children in the clinic during a night shift, the nurses have a radio and can leave the clinic for a while as long as they can be reached. In the event of any serious accidents or emergencies the children are taken to the nearest hospital to be treated accordingly.
In the day, when the doctor is not there, the nurses have a variety of tasks to perform. If there are no children in need of attention, the nurses visit the houses to check the first aid kits and add whatever is needed for all the sections of children, sterilize materials, and restock. They also organize appointments with specialists in the city. Once the appointments are made they inform the children and caretakers what day and what time the children will be taken in and organize transportation for the trips. One person generally goes with the group of children to the city to supervise and bring each of their files to the doctor. There is usually a group that goes to a specialist of some kind once a week if not more often.
When there are children in the clinic, they are examined, given their medication or injection, and are allowed to stay in the clinic until the doctor comes to check them later in the day. The staff in the clinic are responsible for bringing food from the kitchen to feed the children, assisting them in their bathing and addressing whatever other needs they may have. When new children arrive at the orphanage, they often stay in the clinic until their places are ready in their house. They are tested for HIV and other illnesses, treated for lice, and are given a few days to get accustomed to being at the orphanage.
Often there are groups of doctors or medical students that visit the orphanage with the intention of working in the clinic. The nurses structure activities for these groups as they know the needs of the home and the children best.