Physical therapy and vision care at Lahai Health!

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 11.22.14 AMAamir* is a young man in his mid-twenties. He loves his parents and siblings and seems to be much more concerned with taking care of them than with caring for himself. In fact, we first met him when he was bringing his parents in for care.

But Aamir has challenges that most young adults don’t. You see, when he was a 12-year-old boy growing up in Afghanistan, he fell into a dry well about 60 feet deep. He wore a back brace for 6 months, but was left with back pain that has plagued him his entire life. By the end of most days his pain is 8-10 (on a 10-point pain scale), and it radiates to his limbs and other parts of his body.

We referred him to an orthopedic specialist, but often it takes many months for a patient to be seen. Aamir needed relief now!

Thankfully, we recently added 2 volunteer physical therapists to our team! Kathy and Lindsey have been working with Aamir to help relieve pain and teach him how to protect his back from further agitation. He still needs to see a specialist, and we’re praying his referral goes through quickly. But in the meantime, we couldn’t be more thankful that we can help relieve some of his intense pain in the interim so he can continue caring for the people he loves most. He’s tremendously grateful for your help!

Aamir is like many of the people we’re seeing at the clinic lately. Many need care from specialists, but the wait to see the right doctor is incredibly long. And some patients, like Alfonso*, really can’t wait for help.

Alfonso is in his 60’s and came here from the Philipines to live with his mother and sister after suffering a stroke. With no family to help care for him, Alfonso had been struggling to care for himself and his health was rapidly deteriorating.

He came to the clinic in October, and we knew right away that our physical therapists could be a tremendous help. Alfonso’s range of motion was incredibly limited, and he was struggling with dressing himself and other daily activities. He also had hip and shoulder pain that made life difficult.

Kathy and Lindsey have been able to help Alfonso learn to dress himself, and they’ve also helped him regain some of the range of motion he lost. We pray our PT program will grow so he can be seen more regularly — our therapists both believe additional visits will help him improve further. His world would be completely changed with more frequent care!

We’ve often thought about how small things can help make a big difference for patients who are struggling, and one big need we noticed was vision care. Some eye conditions can quickly worsen without proper care. Other issues, even if they aren’t terribly serious, can greatly reduce quality of life.

Desta* is an Ethiopian woman in her early 60’s who has been a patient at Lahai Health off and on since 2012. She doesn’t speak English and the language barrier has made it challenging for her to get the care she needs. For almost a year, Desta has complained of severe burning and itching in her eyes, but she struggled to follow through on referrals.

Dr. Owen recently came on board to provide in-house eye exams, and we were thrilled to be able to help Desta right here at the clinic! He prescribed drops for her eyes, and it has been a huge relief to her. Praise God!

Last year at this time, we knew there were many changes coming with the Affordable Care Act, and our goal was to watch for and respond to opportunities to serve people whose needs remained unmet. Thanks to your generosity, we’ve been able to expand our programs to meet new needs in our community — and we pray that these services will continue to grow so patients like Aamir, Alfonso and Desta get timely relief for their medical challenges.

Thank you for your faithful partnership!