We've finally had an update about new Embassy guidelines. It's happy and not so happy news. Happy news-if we pass court we should get to keep our travel dates. Not so happy news, the CDC is implementing extremely strict guidelines regarding their new TB testing policy. Every child will be tested before their visa is issued. For toddlers and older children, this will mean a skin test. For babies and children under 2 this will involve a gastric aspiration, which means a 2-3 day hospital stay. If a positive skin test is obtained, then the child will have a chest x-ray. If the chest x-ray is suspicious, then a sputum test will be obtained. In Ethiopia, a culture of a sputum test can take up to 8 weeks. If the sputum test is positive, then the child will not be able to come home until they have completed 6 months of drug therapy in Addis under direct supervision by the consulates medical team.
I agree that not bringing active TB into the USA is a good thing, but my heart breaks for those children who will have yet another long delay while they are tested, re-tested, and for those who will have to be treated. Treatment could begin in Addis and then continue under supervision in the USA. I'm not sure who to write to, but I'm going to find out. Anyone out there know the answer to that?
Anyone who thinks that it is in a child's best interest to remain in an orphange instead of with a loving family who is waiting for them obviously doesn't have their head screwed on straight. And, I can't imagine that it would actually be that difficult to arrange for treatment to begin in Addis for a couple of weeks and then to transition smoothly to the health dept. or family dr. here in the States. Easier on the waiting families, better for the child, and still not a risk to the American public-everyone would win. Oh the frustration of bureaucracy in action! And another opportunity to learn to trust God with all of the circumstances of our life. It makes an interesting tight rope, trusting the sovereignty of God while still working to fight for justice for the poor and oppressed and common sense in government.
Please pray for us. Court is 8 days away. There are 11 families with court next week and it is now a near-constant battle not to give in to worry. Passing court, the chance of positive tb tests, delays in the ability to travel, all of them fight for my attention, as I fight to concentrate on what is before me and the truth of God's Word.
Please pray for Rosie. That she will be healthy, that she will be at peace, and that God will prepare her for all of the changes coming her way.