Nineteen years ago, a little girl was involved in a terrible traffic accident in Kumbo. She lost her mother and younger brother in it. She was brought to Banso Baptist Hospital having sustained fractures of both femurs. Her name was Nina and she was 8 years old.
She remembers me working on Children’s ward, and the bandana I sported about my head at that time. She remembers I brought her presents, and that I gave her a Certificate of Bravery. This award also came with a small badge, stating ‘I was very brave for the doctor’. So the Certificate could be stuck to the bed head, and the badge on the pyjama top. This was an idea of mine designed to produce dignity and pride in our child patients. So popular was it, that adult staff from all hospital departments came to me saying that they had been brave for the doctor today, and could they please have a Certificate!
Sad to say, I don’t actually remember Nina – one of hundreds of kids I saw in my years visiting BBH. Quite recently, out of the blue, Nina got in touch with me. She is now 28, and married with a small daughter, and she is a doctor working at Mbingo Hospital. What a tremendous sequel to a traumatic childhood! She said that during her time in BBH she became inspired to be a doctor herself.
One day Dr Nina plans to visit me in Warkton. I will have to dig out an old bandana for the occasion!
Peter McCormick, Feb. 2019