Our first week in India flew by – we have learned so much about Lifespring and the CNM role while also taking in the sights and tastes of Hyderabad.
Marine and Carolyn spent the week in the Bowenpally location, where they forged strong friendships with the nurses and Clinical Nurse Manager. Their hospital is different from Chilakalguda in several ways – the hospital only has 2 floors instead of 5, they have an average of 75 deliveries per month (up from 50), and the surrounding neighborhood in Bowenpally is more remote than the city setting of Chilakalguda.
While CNMs are not involved in all deliveries (most are handled just by nurses with oversight and final delivery by the OBGYN), some special circumstances allowed the Bowenpally team to observe two deliveries this week! The experience was eye-opening and slightly overwhelming as it was their first time witnessing a life birth. It also gave them perspective on how the clinical team works together in a delivery setting and how a delivery is run in a low-cost hospital.
We continued to gather information about the day-to-day activities of the CNMs, and today we are in the main office compiling our data and preparing for a new set of observations next week. We have used our time after work to continue taking in Hyderabad. We had an epic hike up to the top of the Golkonda Fort and purchased 24 pashminas from a vendor in a craft market. I think this was his largest sale ever, but we didn’t make it too easy on him — we basically unwrapped and investigated every scarf in his shop and then unleashed the negotiating prowess of Marine Graham to get the price down to below $4 per scarf, up from well over $10.
A trip wouldn’t be complete without taking in the local food! We took a special trip to the famous Paradise restaurant to try the local specialty: Biryani. It’s a mix of chicken or mutton with rice and spices, and is quite delicious.