DirectConnect was contacted by HandiKos, a non-profit organization in Kosovo, to bring medical professionals to Kosovo to help address the problem of pressure sores. This condition affects many people suffering from paralysis. DCHA responded with two registered nurses from the USA to provide classroom training for a week at HandiKos, instruction on the prevention and treatment of pressure sores. After the classroom instruction DCHA along with the nurses were asked to visit some homes where there were individuals with sores confined to their homes. The team was accompanied with a local nurse who escorted us to three homes and was familiar with the patients and their particular situation. (pictured right) At one home we visited, we found a young woman in a wheelchair, living in conditions that were not good. She suffers with multiple pressure sores from her paralysis, and was not being properly cared for. The combination of her poor health and poor environment in her home, which lacked even running water or adequate toilet facilities for her, resulted in her feeling depressed and having a poor outlook on life. After some visits and help with special cream and good bandages, this young woman was happier and had a more positive outlook.
After discussing the situation with the home-care nurse that took us to this home, DCHA agreed to provide financial support to improve the situation. It was decided that quality medicine would be needed along with regular visits from the home care nurse in order to heal the sores. We payed for the medicines and the cost of the nursing services along with the travel expenses for the nurse. This was done over the span of four months with regular visits by the local nurse from HandiKos who has reported much improvement in eliminating these pressure sores.
At the end of the three months the home care nurse reported great progress was being made with the wounds. She advised that an additional month of care would be very beneficial for the more severe wounds. The latest update proved to be successful with a report that two of her wounds finally closed and she is now able to treat them with ointment. Other wounds are progressing well but will take more time to close completely.
The nurse also reported that this young woman has suffered bites from some insects causing another infection in her body but she is receiving treatment for that as well. The nurse said that “some day you will come back to Kosovo and will be surprised by the condition of this young woman, she is more positive and loves to live”.