Blogging from Jerusalem!
Dear People of the Blogosphere
I am actually sitting at my desk in an office in our Hospital in Jerusalem as I type this! It’s very cold, but the sun is shining and it’s good to be here.
The reason that I am here is to help refine our potential diabetic retinopathy screening programme, which – if it comes off – will see us working in partnership with The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in their camps in the south of the West Bank.
This is very exciting. Yesterday, we had a big meeting that included senior medical staff at the Hospital, Dr Jeanne Garth (Medical Director) and Ahmad, Ma’ali (Nursing Director), as well as Dr Umayyah Khammash, the head of the Department of Health at UNRWA. Everyone is very excited about the possibility of bringing the first ever screening programme for diabetic retinopathy to the oPt, but it’s a huge undertaking and will need a lot of cash!
I am busy updating the project proposal, so we will hopefully have some good news regarding the programme soon. ..
Otherwise, it is wonderful to be back. On Monday night I took a walk into the Old City but promptly got completely lost on the way back. I ended up in an ultra-orthodox Jewish community which, I have to admit, I found not a little intimidating. However, I was able to get back on track when I came upon the Nablus Road and was so pleased that – having been so lost, and it was dark by this time – I was able to find my way around the city – and home! – on only me second visit!
Tomorrow, I go to visit the UNRWA camp at Dheisheh, near Bethlehem, which will play a major part in the screening programme. I’m taking my camera, so watch this space on Friday!
Signing off for now from Jerusalem! Geof.