Ebola treatment center fashion, “Ebola is real be wear. God bless MSF”

Only 3 Confirmed patients now. 2 in Suspect, but low suspicion.  Today the Convalescent tent was torn down and burned. The Oral Confirmed tent is empty and also ready to be torn down.  Only 10 of the 30 Suspect beds are open; the others have orange fencing across the entry to not use.  It really seems the outbreak emergency is over.  There is a thought that Ebola may now be endemic in the region with smaller outbreaks on occasion or a case here and case there.  If you take a look at the WHO website, you can see day by day numbers for all 3 countries – all down.  And in Freetown, there is plenty of capacity now to care for Ebola patients.
We had a period of 6 days with no new cases admitted, but then one by one they began to trickle in again.  Few deaths which really helps morale for sure.

2 of the expat nurses want to go home now.  I was asked to stay, and of course, I said yes.  My end of mission (when I sleep in my own bed again) is March 5.  In another week or so, there will only be 3 expat nurses and 3 expat doctors, so we might not be tripping over each other any longer!  YAY!!!

Just finished a successful IV/medications/how to start/how to mix/how to count drops per minute/etc. training – 4 days with 4 different teams.  It’s what I’ve been working on since I arrived, and now a consistent message for all.  Another nurse is doing Nutrition training as well.  And a team has been formed to interview and do health exams for Survivors. They say they love coming back to the ETC because we treat them like heroes (which they are) but in their communities they are shunned still.  So far, one consistent thing is they all have shoulder pain.  Not sure why…. lots of muscle damage from Ebola, so ..?
 The president of Sierra Leone has promised to open schools again the second or third week of March.  They have been closed since last July.  And if you remember, we are working in the soccer field of Prince of Wales school.  So by necessity, we have to shut down over the next month or so.

Unfortunately, I have to do another night shift tomorrow.  

Hard to believe it was only 86 today and lower humidity.  I swear we are all wilting by 2 pm.  A couple mornings ago, I had to make some copies on the laser printer – there was steam coming up from it as the paper dried in the heat of printing!  Humidity has been above 90 with temps around 90.  I think it might be – when there is no breeze, it’s godawful hot.

Thought you’d get a kick out of the boots I found to wear today (pic above).  The people are so thankful for MSF helping and attribute much of the success of stopping Ebola to MSF.  Feels good.  I try to spread the love, cuz it’s every position, every person, no matter what they do, it all contributes to ending this outbreak.

Thanks to all who continue to write.  I so appreciate the news from all of you and life in The Real World.  Sad the Seahawks lost, but was able to sorta watch via Skype with Pete, Kenny and Sheila while I drank beer in my hotel room at 2 am …  Kenny provided the play by play.

Hugs to all,