As a country, we are exceptional blessed to have an amazing First Lady. She is elegant, sophisticated, knowledgeable, but the trait that we all love the most, is her down to earth and get involved attitude.
PMGH CEO, Mr. Grant Muddle once again had the great pleasure to greet the First Lady, Lynda Babao-O’Neill. She arrived unannounced and without the need for a media presence or the added refinery of a lady in her position.
The First Lady’s mission (Thursday, 30th June) was to take a first-hand look at the Operation Open Heart and to spend time with the children that had received the life-saving procedure of either open-heart or closed heart surgeries. She spent over 3 hours at PMGH, walking both the wards of the Operation Open Heart patients, and in addition spending time within the paediatric ward.
First Lady, Lynda Babao-O’Neill had time with Mr. Darren Wolfers, Cardiac Anaesthetist and Operation Open Heart Coordinator for 2015. This is Darren’s 16th visit to PMGH with Operation Open Heart and he plans to have many more. He appreciated his time with the First Lady to explain the program for 2015, especially the focus on training the PNG local teams.
In the true spirit of her down to earth attitude, she brought a well thought out small gift for each of the patients (children) in the Operation Open Heart program and the numerous children in the paediatrics ward. They all received some colouring in books, crayons, a small treat (a bit of sugar never hurt any child), a popper of flavoured milk, a popper of fruit juice and some fresh fruits consisting of apples and oranges.
The occasion was greeted with excitement and anticipation by each and every child, parent and guardian as she walked from bedside to bedside.
The smiles were infectious and the laughter was contagious as the First Lady spent her 3 hours within the hospital.
The First Lady did not ask for this to be publicised, however at PMGH, we were also very pleased to see her face in the wards of the hospital that we wanted to share this with all of PNG.
The difference this small visit makes to these very sick and ill children is amazing. The parents and guardians also took great delight in engaging with the First Lady and talking about the issues and illnesses that their children are facing. The genuine expressions and real concern that the First Lady exhibited gave each parent and guardian the added feeling of warmth to get through another day.
Thank-you First Lady, Lynda Babao-O’Neill, PMGH and the patients were once again genuinely touched by your visit and we look forward to seeing you again sooner than later.
Story and Photo credit: Port Moresby General Hospital