Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Canadian Health Care, experience 1

We arrived at the hospital, on the busiest day in 5 years. No kidding, the news crew was there to document this. It was in the paper the next day too. So you know what that means. Waiting and plenty of it.

Another interesting point is that since we have only lived here for 3 weeks we do not have a Social Insurance Number, which is apparently your key to the excellent health care up here. We have interim insurance and therefore have to pay up front and get reimbursed. The looks we got though when we said we did not have a SIN card were priceless.

High and low points, from what I can remember....

-having my makeshift splint removed and the coat and my favorite fleece removed was painful, I let them cut off the turtle neck and long underwear and sports bra. Yes 4 layers of clothing had to be removed! Painful!!! And all done in the privacy of the hallway in the triage area! "Sir, could you please turn the other way we need to get this lady's clothing off and there are no rooms to do it in."

-X-rays, this will only hurt a little. Don't believe them.

-slopping on the plaster and splint that would hold my arm for the next 3 days unbeknown to me at that point. From my hand all the way up and over my elbow to my armpit.

-We will have to do surgery, you broke both the ulna and the radius. We will put in a couple of plates and you will be fine. There are no rooms or ORs available now.

Nurse," should we just send her home and let her come back for the surgery?"

Doctor,"there is no way she can go home! She will never make it through the night, she will be in too much pain and then you need to consider any bleeding."

Thank you Doctor!

"Where can we put her? We don't have any beds." Find someplace!

So I spent the night in the ER triage area on a gurney between a woman with a dislocated ankle who cried all night and a lady on the other side who coughed all night. Thank goodness for the morphine. I only cried once and could not be heard over the others.

So I guess the only high was that the doctor would not send me home and made sure I at least had a bed and pain medicine. Or was that a low too?

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