May 9, 2012

Focos Hospital ........

Focos Hospital ........

Ever since I found out about the Focos Hospital in Accra and I made the appointment for Godwin Alanyo, I've been nervous. So many questions, so many obstacles, so much history about Godwin that we don't know.

As we were driving across greater Accra to get to the hospital, (Renee was driving, Kwame was up front with her and I sat in the back with Godwin and his Grandfather, Emanuel Kwesi) questions kept going through my head .......what are you thinking, that you can do a search on the Internet find a hospital and everything else will happen via auto magic. I looked outside, towards the sky and asked God for some kind of sign, I thought about what my DAD would advise me if he knew what I was doing. I had a tiny stomach ache by the time we got to Focos. Helping Kwame and Renee build and sustain a school program is one thing, being responsible for the surgery of a child 1/2 across the world is a completely different challenge.

The hospital is brand new, opened in April and it is run by a group of American and Ghanian doctors, the place is very nice, clean, spacious, laid out like a campus. We were there for a 4:45pm appt and were seen almost two hours later, sometimes that happens.

We met with Dr. Badu, who is associated with Korlebu Hospital here in Ghana.

He was very nice listened to our 5 minute history on how we got to Focos and then he began to run through a series of questions on Godwin. It was tough because all the questions he asked would be best answered by his Mother, and she is not around. The doctor examined Godwin's feet and determined by the shape of his feet that he does not have congenital club foot. He has what he referred to as rigid club foot, a condition that Godwin acquired, perhaps because of some underlying neurological issue. Perhaps something happened during the pregnancy, or maybe during child birth, or perhaps he has some type of neurological issue. Dr. Badu confirmed that Godwin's hands, the limp condition they are in has nothing to do with his feet. He stressed over and over that further investigation needs to be done to understand the root cause of his physical issues. He asked questions about Godwin's standing in school, his social skills, his he indeed learning, all questions that will need to be revisited with a pediatric numerologist. One such doctor comes to Focos once a week so Godwin will go to see him on Thursday May 17th.

The doctor then took time to explain how the club foot condition is corrected without surgery when detected and treated from birth, vs. what Godwin would have to go through to correct his feet. The basic path is a type of casting for six weeks that gets adjusted as the weeks go by, the procedure is intended to soften or loosen the tissue before surgery. Then he would have most likely 2 surgeries, one to address stretching the tissue on the bottom of his feet, imagine right now his foot is curved in and has been bent this way for

13 years. The second surgery would address some structural bone issues, and depending how things go, he could potentially need a 3rd surgery.

The entire experience saddened me greatly for many reasons. Sometimes life is just plain unfair and there is nothing that can correct or take away the lack of care and love that Godwin has endured his entire life. He is the walking billboard for an abandoned child. His grandparents are doing the best they can; I have no idea what happened, I don't want to know. I will shut off this iPad and have a good cry and forever keep Godwin in my prayers.

The exam which included someone taking Godwin's vitals and setting up his chart, and the doctor consult $58 or 100 Ghana Cedis.

------ Short and sweet from my iPad ---------