ORH 2018 - First Day in Surgery
At 6:30 am the bus is making its way through Manila’s early morning rush hour arriving at Ospital Ng Parañaque roughly half an hour later. Just a quick check up of the operating theatre and ‘on we go’. The first patients are already prepared for the procedure, awaiting a final check by the anaesthetic team.
To ease the anxiety for the children mothers are allowed to accompany them into theatre. As soon as the anaesthetist puts the patients to sleep, mum is escorted out to the waiting area. A very emotional moment.
During surgery full concentration is vital and in a number of the cases require more than just one procedure is required to achieve a satisfactory result. This prolongs operating time and puts pressure on the team who have to balance doing something for everyone against doing all they can for each individual child.
Sometimes, hard decisions have to be made and however reluctantly, some cases must be cancelled or deferred until our next visit. At the end of our first day, 17 cleft lips and palates have been corrected by our three teams. After 16 hours on the job, the team reaches the hotel for a short night of rest. The next patients are already waiting.