Posted by: calloftheandes | April 29, 2016

Notes from the Quake Zone (Fifth in a Series)

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(21 April 2016. Chamanga, Esmeraldas Province, Ecuador)

by Steve Nelson

Chamanga was one of the hardest hit beach villages, but without the same high death toll as many of the homes were one floor, “mixed” buildings with some cement and some wood. Many, many people lost their homes—reports as high as 90 percent damaged—but as we walked the streets today externally it seemed more like 30 percent. (Of course we were looking at the buildings obviously damaged.)  Chamanga, Muisne, Pedernales, Bahia, Portoviejo are amongst the names most mentioned [for damages].

Today and to some extent yesterday, there were many docs in the area—especially MSP people [Public Health Ministry] as President Correa wants this tragedy to be seen as something the country can handle.  So while we were in one of the hardest hit areas, we didn’t see too many patients.   However, our ortho guy did have one fracture, and we saw one case of erysipelas—not a very common problem and needs to be diagnosed correctly and treated right to avoid complications.

Dr. Nelson is a family practice physician with Reach Beyond.

Treatment of a mobile clinic patient by Dr. Jack Peña, who normal works in orthopedic surgeries.

Treatment of a mobile clinic patient by Dr. Jack Peña, who normal works in orthopedic surgeries.

 

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