A patient in her authentic Peruvian garb
Two weeks ago I enjoyed going on a village medical trip for the first time in years. (Not that there were other ones I didn't enjoy, it just happened to be the first in years.) It was great to be back out there, speaking Quechua, working with other doctors, and it was especially fun to not be in charge! Medical Ministry International (MMI) organizes monthly village trips throughout Peru, and they contacted me to ask if I would help with their trip to Chivay, a 3-hour drive from Arequipa. On the night before the first clinic, I debriefed the doctors from the US about what types of maladies we commonly see here and available treatments. One of the doctors, a hand-surgeon, said that he could only work from the elbow down, but when we were out there he did a fantastic job of treating all sorts of body aches and pains. Not only did I not have to buy meds, or make arrangements with pastors and buses, when our bus got stuck in the mud, I could take pictures instead of figuring out how to get out!
Nothing that a pick ax can't solve