Dana Yi participated in medical outreach as an intern in Koforidua, Ghana



For five weeks in Koforidua, Ghana, I was able to volunteer in a hospital and participate in various medical outreaches that would allow me to see medical treatment in a different country other than the US. During June 30 to August 1, I volunteered at the labor ward and kids’ ward in the Eastern Regional Hospital. While the Eastern Regional Hospital had plenty of staff and many were well educated with their jobs, lack of supplies showed a difference in care present in the US that was not present in the Eastern Regional Hospital. In the labor ward, I was able to see that sanitation was not heavily emphasized as in the US. I did not have to sanitize myself and could view surgeries up close. Many instruments were sometimes just dunked in a bucket full of antiseptic and used on the next patient. Also, natural births were very common and epidurals were not used. This involved a lot of screaming on the mother’s part. Families of the patients were not allowed to be with them and if the patient was too loud, a nurse would give her a good slap on the leg to shush her. This difference was very startling to me, but I remember being very tearful and touched witnessing the live birth of a little, baby boy. It was a magical moment!