We are the five Form Four students from St Joseph’s Private School together with three of our teachers and along with several other volunteers comprising of doctors, nurses and pharmacists who took part in a mobile clinic visit to Kampung Mayang, Bunan on Saturday, 23 November 2019.
The monthly voluntary Assunta Integrated Social Services (ASSISS) event is organised under the auspices of Assunta Hospital, Petaling Jaya with the objective of providing medical services for villagers in remote locations. The students and teachers arrived at the Carmelite Chapel before 6:00 a.m. and boarded the van bound for Bunan.
After about an hour and a half, we arrived at Kampung Mayang. We were brought to the hall to set up five clinical stations where consultation and treatment can be carried out and prescriptions dispensed for the day. After everything had been set up, the villagers started pouring in. Both the old and the young had come to the hall to get a free medical check-up. The villagers were required to register at the registration booth first. After that, those above eighteen had their blood pressure and blood glucose level tested. Children were exempted from these tests and instead had their temperatures taken. Soon afterwards, the villagers proceeded to the fourth station to be examined by the doctors. The prescribed medicine was then collected from the pharmacists at the last station.
During this period of time, we got the chance to operate the blood pressure monitor machine and to learn how to take the readings of one’s blood glucose level. A few of the villagers were afraid of the stinging pain left behind by the lancing devices and we had to comfort them. Admittedly, we were nervous and clumsy when we first started taking the villagers’ blood glucose levels. However, after a few more tries we could do the job with ease. We also learnt various medical terms such as Paracetamol and Mefenamic acid, which are used to relieve fever and used as pain killers. We also got to learn the dosage of syrup or tablets that should be prescribed to each patient. As there were many villagers with various medical conditions, the medical provisions ran out of supply rapidly.
After packing up the various medical supplies, we had lunch together. The food had been prepared by the villagers to show their gratitude for the free medical check-up. After a prayer led by the village chief, we sat down and enjoyed the scrumptious food prepared for us. The fellowship during lunch was evident as we took a rest and interacted with one another. Afterwards, we took a group picture with the village chief, and headed back to the school which was our drop-off point. The journey back was somewhat hair-raising as the driver drove like a Formula 1 racer. We were all exhausted and soon fell asleep. It was almost 3:00 p.m. when we arrived at school. Although this experience was tiring, it was certainly very fulfilling. We do look forward to another similar experience in 2020.
by Cheryl Chee Jia Wei (F4SP)