Our March mission has finally ended to my regret but at the same time I need to go home and recoup from everything. This was one of the biggest groups of physicians, social workers, psychiatrists and humanitarians that we have had. We had a group of 42 people plus the volunteers and translators and doctors in Jordan that also joined the team.
They were a great group of people but I know that we want to keep the number from now on down to about half that size. It will be easier for the logistics and we will be able to move faster and get to the different sites faster and not worry about getting people onto vans and moving out of the hotel.
Each mission is harder than the last since we are seeing so many more people and seeing the increase of diseases. There has been a high increase in people suffering from PTSD, scabies, leishmaniasis, respiratory disease and so much more. At the Zaatari camp, we received a request that our psychiatrists come there due to the high rates of depression and suicide. We had 5 mental health specialists on this mission and they went regularly to Zaatari. Luckily, we also have a doctor in Amman who will follow up with these patients. On other days we split the team into clinics in different cities in Jordan.
Our translators would tell the stories of the families and the patients to the visiting doctors. Some of our doctors had to take time to talk to our own team of mental health specialists since this was their first mission and they were feeling overwhelmed by the horrors that these people had gone through. Even for me, I have been on 8 missions now, it is very hard. I believe I cried like I did on the very first mission when seeing and hearing the stories the refugees have to tell. But I did see some our patients that we had treated on previous missions, and saw how we had helped them, and that gave me a good feeling that we were making a difference.