I would say that we have been in a confused but open space, just seeing and hearing and feeling all that is possible.
Now, I can come to some clarity and say that through the work of so many people at many meetings and many cups of tea, a framework seems to be forming. And, we have come to a mental space that allows some giving of western medical attention! It was very interesting this morning when Jay had consented to see an elderly man. The dispensary was locked, but the Tibetan Medicine Doctor Dubje said to come into his office. So, Jay did a Western medical exam with dr. Dubje interpreting. Now, Dr. Dubje will take Jay’s recommendations to a doctor/hospital in Gangtok to get western medical help there. Very interesting working together of the two practices. This is necessary to continue. There are many more stories of interest, to say the least.
Regarding the overall project picture: it has been determined that an old structure that was donated by Rinpoche will be restored and serve as a clinic. This may take 6 months or more to complete. That is a long term goal.
In the short term: the plan is to stock the dispensary in the monastery with supplies and medications, and to hire a M.D. and a nurse to come weekly.
It has taken many meetings and many cups of tea with wonderful people to come to these conclusions. Dr. Jigme(his father served as the physician for the 16th Karmapa) was especially helpful and will help in finding the doctors and nurses that are needed.
This is all I can report for now. We will go to Gangtok tomorrow with Gen. Sec. Chungyalpa to meet with Tashi Densapa and do other research into locating good pharmacies and medical supply houses.
Susan Kirchoff and Don Ross