Friday, January 2, 2009

Firsts in 2009

1. First time I had ever dialed 911
2. First time my mother has ever asked me to dial 911
3. First time my mother has been a patient in a hospital since she gave birth to me

My mother does not like hospitals. It isn't an overt phobia, you have to be paying attention to figure it out. Like observing the fact that every time my dad has had to go to emerg, mom has dropped him off at the doors and told him to call her when he was ready to come home. One of those times he had had a stroke. also, when i was a teenager, I had to have a bone marrow test, and mom made dad take the day off work to take me to it, even though he didn't even know how to get to the hospital (it was in another city).

She has good reason for this dislike of hospitals. When she was a little kid they thought that strawberry birthmarks, of which she had three, were cancerous. We now know that they just go away as the child grows up. So she had to have them surgically removed, at around two years old, when your parents weren't allowed to visit you in the hospital. When her parents came to take her home, her dad had to drive home with her around his neck because she refused to let go.

So, when she woke me up last night and told me to call 911, I called. and asked for an "amblance" (i was still asleep). so, of course, we get the ambulance, and then a few minutes later, two firemen and a police officer. party in mom's bedroom! the cop and firemen left soon after, slightly disapointed. she left for the hospital around 12:30, we got to go in and see her after all her bloodwork and x-rays etc at 1:30, they told us she had to stay overnight and we should go home at 2:30. Fastest time through emerg that I have ever heard of. 1 person came through triage the entire time we were there, and no ambulances even came in. Apparently the night of New Years day is a quiet time in the ER, who knew?

Things we learned:
1. Complaint of "Chest pain" trumps everything, even what you ask them to test for and should have been obvious in a diabetic patient.
2. The ambulance desk doesn't communicate well with the rest of the hospital and does not pass on key information, like the fact that she is diabetic!
3. Volunteers and staff only know their little bit. The information volunteer has no idea that you can't park on the street at night, or where to park instead, the ER coffee shop volunteer has no clue how you would go about picking up a patient from the ER, and of course, the nurses aren't allowed to give you their opinion or tell you what they think.

all in all, a pretty uneventful trip to the hospital, but still nothing i would like to repeat anytime soon.

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