Today has been a bit of a nightmare! So I woke up at 5:45, an insane time of day for anybody, to get ready for my first day of placement and make it to the bus stop for 7am. Having made it in plenty of time, I found out the bus doesn't go til 7.30 so I was pretty gutted I missed out on a potential extra 30 minutes of sleep. The bus was so old and rickety but it was a fine 45 minute journey right to the hospital doors for only 2RM /40p!
When I arrived, I had no idea where to go, it took me ages to find my way. Finally I met the hospital director, a nice guy, and his lovely secretary who mothered me whilst I got all my admin stuff sorted. After this, I went to the paeds department, where the head of department is apparently away til Friday so they didn't know what to do with me! I was passed around from one doctor to another for a long time before I briefly joined a ward round. The doctors appeared very busy so I wasn't able to get very involved but it was interesting to get a flavour of the more common paeds conditions in Borneo. It surprised me a little to be honest as I was expecting seriously exotic infectious diseases but most of the children had bronchiolitis! After an hour or so, I was advised to go to a clinic so I went off to find where I should go. After walking around on multiple floors of the (much larger than anticipated) hospital, I found my way and managed to sit in on a neurology clinic- loads of cerebral palsy and epilepsy patients! Unfortunately it wasn't amazing for me as the clinic was carried out in Malay and there were so many patients that the doctor didn't really manage to include me so I didn't know much as to what was going on, I unless I hovered over the doctors shoulder to read his notes (in English!). At five to two, clinic finished and I rushed off to find a paediatric teaching session I had been invited to. Teaching is three times a week, and today it went on for two and a half hours! Some poor house officers were teaching about haemostasis and the clotting cascade and the specialists were grilling them to an inch of their life! Some moments felt insanely awkward as the presenters had no idea what to say.
After teaching finished at 4:30 I attempted to sneak off home, however I found out the busses stopped running at 3! So I paid 25RM for a taxi, which I later found out was a massive rip off (still, not bad for a 20 minute journey!)
When I got home I was exhausted, my body is still completely out of sync with the time this side of the world, so I had a nap. I then met up with some people from my course back in Leeds for a pub quiz, randomly hosted by a Leeds graduate who has moved out here! It was a good night and was great to see some familiar faces. Back to hospital tomorrow but with the boys from home in tow so fingers crossed I will feel a little more at ease...!