Volunteering in Cambodia – Getting Hands-On Experience

Posted by: Chase

This morning at the hospital while I was volunteering in Cambodia at the Medical Aid project, instead of doing rounds, I helped in wound dressing. There is a particular nurse who lets me get all the hands-on experience I’ve had so far at the medical aid project.

He is a short, thin middle aged man with curly hair. I knew mostly what to do from observing nurses in the previous days and he helped refine my procedure. Though he doesn’t speak anything besides “yes,” “no,” and “stop,” it is enough for me to understand.

My first involvement was with a man who had scrapes on his face. I timidly wiped some of the iodine disinfectant liquid into his face. The second patient had a bad case of appendicitis. He was getting better and today he had a tube that was collecting pus removed. The next patient had cellulitis on his foot. I rubbed the foot with disinfectant and cut the dead skin away. Then, I bound his foot with gauze.

Finally, the last patient had his foot eaten away by bacteria. I rinsed his foot over with salt water and dried it. I poured hydrogen peroxide over the wound and then rinsed it off again. Then I bound his foot with gauze cloth and adhesive. This particular man has been here for nine days so far.