Medical emergency in Ningil
A young mother had given birth in her village during the night. The bleeding didn’t stop so her husband and extended family constructed a stretcher from bamboo poles and palm leaves and carried her for two and a half hours down the mountain to the Clinic in Ningil.
Ningil Clinic does not have the services of a Doctor but is staffed by three part time Nurses. Sr Lawrencia, a Presentation Sisters is one of the members of Staff. The nearest hospital (4 beds) is in Nuku which is about two and a half hours drive away depending how good the road is on any given day and the availability of the one and only local ambulance and driver! If the driver of the ambulance needs to go to the bank and do shopping then he is at the nearest town which is halfway between Wewak and Ningil.
The staff attended to the young mother and stopped the bleeding. They were unsure if she needed to be taken to the hospital for they needed a Blood Pressure Machine to give them more information about her medical condition.
I had arrived the night before in Ningil after a seven hour trip in the truck from Wewak. How timely was my arrival for this situation! Thanks to St Rita’s College in Brisbane the Ningil Clinic is now the proud owner of a Blood Pressure Machine.
Lawrencia rushed over to the Sisters house and said “You must come now and present the BP machine as we need it quickly”. I scurried over, Sr Fran Kosi snapped a photo and within minutes the package was ripped open and disappeared to the next room! No the mum didn’t need to go to hospital but they did manage to keep mother and baby at the Clinic over night for observation. The next day Mum, baby, husband and family entourage trekked back up the mountain to their village.
Sr Mary Walsh