Friday, March 18, 2005

The Kenya trip - hard at work

On Monday after we arrived in Kijabe, we plunged into work, quickly establishing ourselves in a small room in the basement between Ted's office and the computer room (where you see Peter working and my laptop set up next to him). First we set up the computers, discovering in the process a few problems with the hospital's network configuration. When Tim was able to fix these problems, Ted declared our trip to be a success regardless of what else we accomplished. Peter promptly set up his Mac and continued work on his customization of the Care2x software. Allison went down the hall two doors to the inventory room and started helping the woman who worked there to set up and use the new inventory system that the hospital has recently obtained. I started talking with people and looking at the forms and putting together a list of changes needed to make the database useful in Kijabe. It quickly became obvious that we weren't going to be able to do a quarter of what was really needed and wanted, and I spent a lot of time saying "no." It also became evident that the designers of Care2x hadn't quite anticipated using it in a hospital like Kijabe, so we were going to have to strip it down considerably and add some features to have any hope of making it useful. All of this had to be done in two weeks, because in our last week we were going to roll the software out and do all the training and cleanup necessary to make it work. So we plunged in and got to work, spending our days in this little room and working as rapidly as possible to make this happen. And by God's grace, we made good progress, though one problem threatened to torpedo our efforts right at the beginning.

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