On research. . .
This week I missed my train and took an 8 hour bus to Mombasa with 6 people from our pediatrics team for the Kenyan Pediatric Association meeting. Our hospital had submitted eight posters, and we were also giving 3 oral presentations. We were also going to talk to pediatricians from all over the country, to learn what they were doing, what we could do better, and how we can help each other.
The most exciting thing about this conference is that I was coming as a mentor and friend, but our clinical officers, interns, and former interns were doing all the presentations. They had come up with the ideas, done the research, submitted the abstracts, and they were excited about what they were presenting. I bounced from poster to poster, presentation to presentation, taking pictures and smiling as they answered the hard questions, explained our reasoning, and shared how we had overcome problems with innovative solutions and saved lives.
Throughout the conference, I heard over and over how excited people were with what we were doing, how impressed they were by our trainees, and how they were hoping to implement some of the ideas where they were working. A representative from the ministry of health saw our poster on training clinical officers and said it should be moved through the system immediately so it can be expanded. A cluster of pediatricians from Western Kenya gathered around Michelle asking her to email them our hypernatremia protocol. Clinicians around Irene postulated how we could bring down the cost of IVIG in Kenya so we could treat babies with extremely high bilirubins even more effectively. At one point, of the 8 screens displaying the abstracts that had been submitted, 5 of them were ours and people were gathered around each one asking questions.
I love my team. I am so proud of how we have grown and the role we are playing in pediatrics in Kenya as a whole.