This week I was discharged from the hospital, after over a year of medical treatment (including follow-up appointments to check on my progress). I required the assistance of the National Health Service because, in January 2017, in a fall from a stage, I sustained a very nasty fracture and dislocation of my left wrist.
On the evening of the accident I was taken by car to A&E (Accident & Emergency) at a hospital only about 3 miles away. Once the dislocation had been sorted, and a plaster cast fitted, I later required an operation to fit a titanium plate. Then, in September 2017, I had a second operation to remove the plate as it was in danger of rupturing a tendon. During my recovery, which involved regular visits to a physiotherapy clinic, I have had time to ponder what my fate might have been if I had been living in an isolated location with no medical facility nearby, and no access to transport to take me to the nearest hospital or health centre.
In February 2017, a few weeks after my accident, SURVIVE-MIVA approved a transport grant for St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Agarakottalam, Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu, India, which is run by the Franciscan Sisters of St. Aloysius Gonzaga (FSAG). The Health Centre was accessible to those people living in 5 villages situated close to Agarakottalam, but the Sisters wanted a vehicle so that they could take their healing ministry to a further 12 remote villages.
Now, with the vehicle purchased and on the road, a team of one doctor, one nurse, and several Sisters and volunteers, provide regular health camps and awareness programmes to the people living in these remote villages. When necessary, the vehicle is also used to transfer patients to larger health facilities.
The Franciscan Sisters of St. Aloysius Gonzaga were extremely grateful for the grant and wrote to SURVIVE-MIVA expressing their deep gratitude. In return, I wish to thank the FSAG Sisters and all the dedicated healthcare professionals worldwide for the great work they are engaged in – the healing of the nations!
'And the power of the Lord was there so that He should heal' Luke 5:17