thanks for the comments... i feela bit over whelmed about it, and im not there yet.
i leave in 2 weeks.
Just a bit more on my assignment.
The aboriginal community population is of about 800 people, with around 50 non-aboriginal people. The nearest town, and hospital is around 600Km's away. (6 hours drive). in an emergency, or if a patient is critically ill, wehave the Royal Flying Doctors, who fly down and pick them up.
English is a second language at this place, as it is so remote. Tribal law still plays amajor part in day to day life, and it not not uncommon to have to treat a spearing wound (into the thigh), inflicted as a punishment.
The community is a dry community, meaning drinking alchol is prohibited within a 10 mile radius of the town. alcohol is a major health issue within the majority of aboriginal communities, as it was only introduced to them 200 years ago.
other chronic health issues are: renal disease, heart disease, diabetes (mostly type 2), obesity, glaucoma, and STI's.
Basically, the nurses run a clinic 7 days a week, (mon- fri, then 1/2 days over weekend). there we monitor the health of who-ever needs to be seen. it can vary from a chronic wound ulcer, to a child having a asthma attack or car accident.
its pretty much like an emergency department, but theres only 1 doctor, who is there for 4 days a week, then flies out again. so we unofficially diagnose and treat (we can phone a doctor for orders) when opn the Drs days off.