The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has hospitals around the world scrambling for help and families unsure how to help hospitalized loved ones. In Indonesia, however, patients rely on their families year-round.
Indonesian hospitals don’t provide the same kind of care many Western hospitals do. As a result, families are the ones tasked with providing food, changing bedding, and even picking up medication for patients admitted to the hospital. But then night falls and families are sent away from the hospital, and many are left with nowhere to go.
That’s where Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) steps in. Since June of 2013, MAF staff and families have been running a hospital house, or Rumah Singgah, for patients and their families in Kalimantan. Pilots and mechanics help provide medical evacuations and transport for individuals in the Indonesian interior, then their families help care for them at the hospital house.
Staff maintain five bedrooms and additional space for patients and their families. The house is within walking distance of the hospital so families have easy access to their loved ones. In the meantime, they can cook, bathe, and wash their clothes at the house.
And MAF staff do more than just provide space. Kathryn Boogaard, wife of a MAF pilot mechanic; Angie Johnson, wife of a MAF maintenance specialist; and Amy Eadie, wife of a MAF mechanic all work with the hospital house.
“We’ll go and visit the hospital house and we’ll visit with the families and pray for them, and some families just are content with that,” Johnson says. “But other families that do need extra care, you really build a relationship with them.”
For example, one farmer almost lost his hand in a chainsaw accident. Forced to undergo three months of physical therapy, he needed a place to stay with his family. MAF staff combined funds, shopped for the family’s groceries, gave them a safe and comfortable place to stay, and visited them on a regular basis to build a relationship with them.
Another guest ran into Johnson and her husband mid-hike long after his stay at the hospital house. His wife had given birth in the hospital, and while the new family stayed with MAF, the Johnsons and other staff members came and prayed with them. When he recognized them, he thanked them graciously.
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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Alex Anhalt
CALL TO ACTION
- Pray for patients and their families as patients recover in these hospitals.
- Ask God to move the local community to involve themselves in the hospital house project.
- Thank Him for the success of this hospital house so far.