Volunteers serving at the Wanblee Clinic on Pine Ridge Reservation last week included Christina Arostegui, DNP Student from Viterbo; Chad Thurman, MD, Family Medicine at the Gundersen Onalaska Clinic; and Peg Corey, RN, retired nurse from Gundersen.
From the Wanblee team,
It has been a busy 3 days caring for patients at the Clinic. We seen a total of 32 patients between Christina and Chad. Our Nurse Peg, was quick rooming patients and even helping the other nurses. To show their appreciation the staff cooked us lunch and even made their special fried bread. The nurses are Denise and Michelle. The receptionist is Melinda. The providers are Meg Musselman, NP, Dr. Cazan and a pediatrician that comes weekly. While driving to the clinic at 730 am, we see our patients walking to the clinic a distance away to see Gundersen. After leaving at 600 pm, our patients were walking back home. Not much time for blogging but our patients left well cared for. Twice our team was worried about the storms, we dodged the first one and will see if we do tomorrow morning.
We had heard about Angelina’s Burrito in Kyle and it happened to open on our way. The food was great and the people even better. The brother in law told us their family story. Angelina and her husband started out selling burritos from a cooler in their car in 1998. They would drive all around to the local business selling their burritos. Next they opened a small trailer near the post office. And finally they applied for a grant for small business through the tribe. With the money they took the chance and opened the restraurant.
After the exhausting days, we ate mostly at the ranch where we could decompress and get a hot meal. Thursday night, Peg needed more time for decompression after she found a cat sleeping in her bed. Tomorrow on our way home, we will enjoy some of the local culture including the Heritage Center, Higher Ground and the Badlands. Meg has even volunteered to cook dinner the next time so might be an incentive to come out in March. I heard she is a great cook. Over all the patients and staff were very gracious and appreciate of all the help. It was a great experience and feel we made a difference for some of the patients or at least less waiting time!