My name is Anne Guion and I am a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner living and volunteering at St. Francis Community Hospital, a not for profit, faith based hospital serving a community of the working poor in a community called Kasarani on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya. We reach over 100,000 patients per year and most of our staff live in our local community--meaning that we are highly motivated to serve our neighbors, colleagues and loved ones.
In a country with less than 200 ICU beds for the entire population of 45.5 million people, higher levels of care are unreacheable for the common person. St. Francis Community Hospital has recognized this and built an entirely new facility to provide increased levels of care including an adult ICU, a pediatric unit with ICU capabilties and an overhaul of the current nursery to be able to provide high dependency care. What they lack now is equipment.
In this age of medical technology, equipment is life saving. Whether it provides necessary respiratory support, allows for early identification of patient deterioration or prevents medication errors, the equipment that the developed world has access to changes the lives of the people it serves on a minute by minute basis. In the world of neonatal and pediatric care, rapid identification and treatment of disease process is key in improving both short and long term outcomes. Minutes are hours to these children, and the current process of hurry up and wait for available equipment, especially in premature infants, neonates and children in distress, can decrease both their probability of survival but also for their long term ability to thrive.
It is my goal to help fund and assist in the procurement of, and education on, life saving pediatric and neonatal equipment so we can provide the best care to our kids, helping them not just to survive, but to flourish. Already, we have kickstarted this by working with CMMB to purchase a bCPAP machine to help support our babies in respiratory distress along with books on critical care so we can provide the safest, most evidenced based care. Now we are looking to purchase another bCPAP machine, 3 Cardiac Monitors, 14 Continuous Pulse Oximeters and 20 syringe pumps to give us the ability to monitor our kids more closely and intervene sooner, as well as adminsiter fluids and medications in the safest way possible. We believe our kids are change makers and we hope you do too!