Adventist Health White Memorial Mission Stats Mwami, Zambia
Mwami Adventist Hospital Testimonial
In Haiti, Adventist hospital celebrates nursing staff achievements
In Haiti, Adventist hospital lab manager increases patient laboratory visits by 800%
International Cafe: Ever Considered Global Surgery? A Glimpse into the Life of a Missionary Surgeon
LLUH nursing staff mentors one of the First Intensive Care Unit nurses in Malawi
Malamulo Adventist Hospital research published in the Malawi Medical Journal
LLUH Landscape Director improves campus grounds at Valley View University in Oyibi, Ghana
Haiti Adventist Hospital Department of Education and Training Basic Life Support/Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
Seminars by Doctors Without Borders
Haiti Adventist Hospital Department of Education and Training Blood Drive
Haiti Adventist Hospital Department of Education and Training Certificate in Pediatric and Neonatal Intensive Care
HAH Visit to Englese Adventiste de Sanai
Rose Charities visit to Haiti Adventist Hospital
Newest hospital in Ghana named in honor of Dr. Richard Hart
Bere Nutrition Center success stories
School of Medicine alumnus assumes new role in Malawi
Adventist hospital in Haiti celebrates 35 years of service with the opening of a new state-of-the-art surgical suite
Malamulo Kids: Vol 1 Issue 2
Malamulo Kids: The official newsletter of the Malamulo Children's Hospital
Merry Christmas from Malamulo
Bere Adventist Hospital - projects update
Haiti update: Clinical lab restoration complete
Malamulo Quarterly Newsletter: Issue 3, Volume 2
AHI volunteer takes on the role of teaching English in Haiti
Bere Adventist Hospital and Nutrition Training Center re-open after evacuation causes closure
Update on Hopital Adventiste d'Haiti (HAH) by hospital administrator, Edward Martin
Circle of Blessing - Malamulo Hospital
Bere Adventist Hospital reaches out to local community
Community Hospital of Trinidad receives new MRI equipment
Our Involvement in Africa
Bere Adventist Hospital's new EMR goes live
MaLawi Medical Missions: Fundraiser
MH Newsletter: Issue 2, Volume 2
Emergency Medicine Residents and Physicians aid in Nepal bus accident
A "Noble" Act of Philanthrophy
Hospital Adventista de Nicaragua
Following God's Call in the Medical Mission FIeld
Footsteps of the Unknown
PICU Team Takes on Malawi
You're invited to celebrate 100 years of healing with Malamulo Hospital
LLUH surgical team recently returned from Nepal. Read their experience here in the blog Haitibones.
Loma Linda specialist team travels to aid Nepal
Nepal: Updated May 4, 2015
Adventist hospital in Nepal responds to earthquake
Retired microbiologist shares professional experience and expertise with mission hospitals
Global Healthcare Conference- Thank you
Management residents serve a global audience
Front Lines of the Ebola War
Malamulo Hospital Quarterly Newsletter: Issue 3
Adventist Hospital and GHI site in Malaysia receives 'Gold' from World Health Organization
Scheer Memorial Hospital begins the new year with a new CEO. Meet Dr. Dale Mole
DMA Newsletter- Winter 2015
NBC News features AHI physician, Scott Nelson as he continues to work in Haiti, five years after the earthquake.
Haiti: Annual Update
Serving Far from Home- Nepal
Adopt-a-Missionary 'giving to a giver' project brings Christmas cheer to 15 missionary families serving overseas
EBOLA update: Dec. 8
Give Global: Project End Ebola
Give to a giver with Adopt-a-Missionary
Malamulo Hospital Quarterly Newsletter
LLUSM Class of 2016 Adopts Cooper as Class Project
Thirty-three Hospitals Join Together for the Third Annual Global Healthcare Conference
Special Vespers Draws Nearly One Thousand Viewers
Global Healthcare Conference: Live Stream
Waterloo Hospital Plans to Re-Open as Ebola Clinic
Front Lines of the Ebola War, Vespers Program
Shoes for Haiti
Why did they give? Malamulo staff interviews tell story of why they gave to help West Africa
Malamulo takes Initiative to Help Sister Hospitals Fight EBOLA
Gillian Seton shares her view on the impact of EBOLA in Liberia
AHI Doctor Heads to Liberia to Aid EBOLA Crisis: James Appel's personal log of daily events
A Good Death?
Two Hospital Staff Die during EBOLA Quarantine
Waterloo Hospital Placed Under Quarantine due to EBOLA Patient
EBOLA Update: The Numbers Keep Growing
AHI Doctor Heads to Liberia to Aid EBOLA Crisis: Entry 1
Dr. Hart addresses EBOLA crisis in West Africa
Cooper Hospital to Remain Open as EBOLA Free Zone to Patients
EBOLA outbreak endangers lives of hundreds in Africa
AHI takes part in Global Conference on Health and Lifestyle
Global Health Conference 2013
Malawi President Visits Malamulo
Baptism at Malamulo

 

A Good Death?

Donn Gaede, Assistant Professor of Global Health and Health Administration and Secretary for Adventist Health International, he works closely with the hospitals in West Africa. 

September 12, 2014

A new article that just came out in the New England Journal of Medicine, A Good Death- Ebola and Sacrafice  pushed at my thoughts from recent discussions that are taking place here at Loma Linda regarding our work at two of our hospitals.  As many of you know there is a terrible Ebola outbreak going on in West Africa and two of the hospitals that AHI works with are located in the middle of this crisis.  Waterloo Hospital in Sierra Leone and Cooper Hospital in Liberia.  Many know about our graduates at Cooper, Gillian Seton and James Appel, who are working long hours with the dedicated staff to provide medical care to non-Ebola cases in Monrovia where most of the health care system has collapsed (see AHIglobal.org for reports).  As some have pointed out, more are dying from non-Ebola cases because either people can’t access medical care now because of the closed hospitals or are afraid to go because of fear of exposure.  But the fear of Ebola is real.  Inadequate facilities and practices, often because of the limited supplies, are the norm so when cases of Ebola show up it is not uncommon to be vulnerable to infection.  And then there is the almost 50% death rate.  Lack of transportation to Ebola treatments centers, lack of sufficient beds and medical staff to treat the disease, stigma of family members, different beliefs in causes of disease and therefore methods of disease transmission are pushing this historical outbreak to unprecedented levels.  Fear is rampant and social and economic structures are breaking down.  As our Business Manager explained “it is very quiet on the streets as people are afraid to come out and associate with one another.”  A recent NPR report explained that transportation systems are broken so crops are left in the field because they can’t be transported to market, supplies and market goods can’t be replaced in the stores so people are having a hard time finding enough food and household goods.  It is a dismal picture.

Almost two weeks ago we found out that an Ebola patient came to our hospital at Waterloo.  Our staff screens patients and in the process discovered that this patient was a likely case.  We contacted the authorities quickly but it took time to transport the patient.  While in our care approximately 7 staff members were exposed in some way to this patient.  While we had tried to set up appropriate precautions and procedures some of our staff were non-the-less exposed.  The government decided to close the hospital and put our entire staff in quarantine at the hospital.  We have a guard stationed to keep patients away and staff members in the hospital.  Daily our Doctor checks each member to see if any symptoms exist.  During the course of the last week, three members were discovered to be positive for symptoms and subsequent testing has confirmed they are positive for the Ebola virus.  The authorities were immediately notified and they were transferred to an Ebola treatment center.  Yesterday we learned that one of our employees has died.  You can imagine the sadness and fear that has descended on our staff as they sit waiting for their 21 days to pass.  Twice a day they have worship, asking for God’s protection and seeking His will for their lives.  What questions does this raise?  I might add that in both of our hospitals our staff have chosen to continue to come to work when many other hospitals have been closed because the staff have been afraid.  Did our staff make the wrong decision?  Is God with them?  What do they do now? 

As many of us know, these are some of the hardest questions to answer.  It takes a deep faith in God to be able to walk through the “valley of the shadow of death” without fear, trusting fully in our Heavenly Shepherd and Heavenly Father.  What the right decision is I will not say.  I believe these decisions must be made in private communication directly with our heavenly Father.  Everyone will receive their own specific answer.

What about those that have died?  Was there death in vain?  I would like to point out that in the time they have stayed open there have been many cases that have come to the hospital where the patients would have likely died if they were not there.  Because people have been hesitant to seek help, some have died on our doorstep.  For those we have had to provide comfort to the grieving families.  There is a profound mission work that has been taking place each day at these hospitals.  The communities have come to our hospital looking for hope and our staff, from housekeepers, to maintenance support, to business people, to nurses and health personnel, to our doctors, all have been there to provide it.  God has found ready hands made available for His work to be done through them.  They have offered themselves willingly and readily to be there in the place of danger to provide comfort, hope and healing to our brothers and sisters in desperate need.  Because yes, these are our brothers and sisters.  These neighbors are fellow children of our heavenly Father and He has poured out the best of heaven to reach out to them to draw them to Him.  And in this time of terror, we need people who are willing to give a clear picture of what God is really like, who are willing to offer themselves to demonstrate the truth about our Heavenly Father in the face of the lies that the Devil is spreading throughout this world.   We need people to walk the footsteps of Jesus.  We are in the middle of a very Great Controversy and these people are on the front lines.  I want to honor them for their sacrifice and honor God for what He has done through them and what he continues to do through the memory of their lives of sacrifice.  I pray that the staff members have not died in vain.  I pray that their families will experience the presence of God in their lives even as their beloved family members have gone to sleep.  I pray that we as a church family will support them during and after this crisis.  And most of all I pray that people will see God for who He really is and that this Controversy can be settled once and for all so we can go home with Jesus very soon. 

Was their death a good death?  I believe that God will record a wonderful testimony in the Book of Life.  I look forward to reading His version when it is opened to us and we will see the beautiful story of redemption that they are now part of.

Father, please come quickly.