Day 2: Tour of Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services facilities in Mutengene
- Written by Keir Hammer
- Published: 25 May 2014
We certainly notice the weather! Hot. Humid. And then it rains. It is the rainy season in Cameroon. I think we should promote a visit to Cameroon as part of a guaranteed weight loss program. I must have dropped 5-10 pounds in water weight today.
Today was eye-opening!
We started the day touring the “Central Pharmacy” (CP) of the Cameroon Baptist Convention Health Services (CBCHS--Cameroonians love their acronyms). This is a warehouse complex where all of the medical/hospital goods shipped to Cameroon arrive before being sorted and distributed among the various institutions of the CBCHS. As its name indicates (“Central”), this place is the center for the distribution of supplies in Cameroon. All materials shipped by White Cross (as well as other agencies) arrive at the Central Pharmacy: every hospital bed, every bandage, every baby blanket, every wheelchair, every order of latex gloves, every bolt of material, etc. is unloaded here and fills orders from institutions across the country. They also produce many other medical supplies right here. Over 300 people (all Cameroonian) work at Central Pharmacy. Picture: JJ Williams (far left), Keir Hammer and Cal Hohn (2nd from right) pose on a hospital bed with CP staff.
What stood out more than all the bustle of activity were the clearly heart-felt expressions of gratitude for the provisions supplied by White Cross over the years and the hope that this will continue well into the foreseeable future. Although I have not yet toured the hospital and health centres where these supplies are used, I could already sense how important the White Cross supplies are to the CBCHS.
The important of White Cross supplies was confirmed by Dr. Emmanuel Tambe, a leading eye surgeon in Cameroon who works at Mutengene hospital (different from the Central Pharmacy, but in the same city). Dr. Tambe told us a story of how someone was able to afford eye surgery because the ongoing contributions from White Cross help to lower costs. Dr. Tambe, who is a native Cameroonian, spent some time in Canada studying and teaching; his heart for God and for his people is so evident. Picture (R-L): Keir Hammer, Dr. Tambe and the Finance Administrator at Baptist Hospital Mutengene (BHM) share a laugh.