After 17 years in Emergency Medicine, I have seen many horrific sites and heard many terrible stories from patients as I cared for them or their family. For better or worse, those gory stories usually don’t impact me, emotionally, like they did in the past. I saw a young boy today, named Kevin, whose physical body and heart wrenching story punched me in the gut so hard that I am still nauseated. Kevin is a 3 year old boy that was burned with boiling hot water in November of last year. He was taken to a hospital and received initial burn care. He was referred to the burn unit at Mulago Hospital in the capital. His mom did not take Kevin to Mulago, for a few reasons, but mainly due to lack of resources. Kevin’s mother, Babra, brought Kevin to our clinic in Rushere today to try to get some help.
Babra keeps Kevin covered with a blanket, obvious reasons. When I uncovered him to look at the burns, my translator shrieked. Then, my translator would not even look at Kevin again. I asked permission to hold Kevin and to take a photo with him. I will warn you, this picture is not for the faint of heart.
If I could try to explain what his injuries are, I would say these things:
1.) His lower eyelids were burned and scarred down to his cheeks, almost like they were melted.
2.) His nose was pretty much burned off.
3.) His lower lip was scarred down to his chin, where he cannot shut his mouth.
4.) Kevin’s shoulders are scarred up to his neck on both sides. Giving the appearance that he has no neck.
5.) Kevin’s left elbow is scarred down in a 90 degree position, making his left arm have limited use.
I feel like God is wanting the Due Unto Others team to pull together to help Kevin. Babra has agreed to take Kevin to Mulago for evaluation. It is 4 hours from Rushere to Kampala in our van with the expert driver David at the wheel. I am sure it is much longer by taxi van or bus. I will be discussing this case with Dr. Martin and arranging for an evaluation with a plastic surgeon. I am sure that there will be multiple surgeries needed to try to regain function of his eyelids, mouth and arms.
Please pray for Kevin and Babra. This is a painful and difficult time for them. Please also prayerfully consider giving towards the care of this beautiful young boy. I am estimating here, but I could easily see his care costing $4,000 USD. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will tell you how you could give specifically towards his care.
Please share this with anyone you can. This is quite a serious case.
I will end this post with the motto for the Renewal Healthcare Network: We Care, Jesus Heals!