Learning Uruguay

Every day brings ????

A trip to the emergency room – and the followup

Posted by urufish on April 30, 2007

Last week, my wife complained she needed to get some medication for a recurring condition that is not common to menfolk.  She spoke with one of her friends who suggested she go to the emergency department at Espanola, the health provider we deal with here.

We’re from Canada, and for the past few years in Ontario, a trip to the emergency room requires you to bring enough food and clothing for a good campout.   I thought that was a very poor idea to go to emergency here, but we went anyway.  To my surprise, the lineup wasn’t long.  After a very quick interview process.. as in.  your name and what do you think your problem is and wait a minute–and it really was a minute.  The doctor saw her, wrote a script and a request for a test and away we went.   This particular provider also has its own pharmacy so we went downstairs, filled the script and went home.

The next day she went for the test, and was again, in an out in about 20 minutes.  If this was Toronto, we might still be waiting to see the doctor in the emergency room.  You see, emergency rooms in the Toronto area are really for emergencies, as in life and death.  If you’re not in iminent danger of expiring, you shouldn’t be there.   Come to think of it, during the SARS crisis, many of us thought we may very well hasten that up by going to the emergency room. 

She was told to come back for the test results in a couple of days, and she did.  This time there was a long lineup of people waiting in the emergency… but she saw the doctor who saw her and he saw her and he took her immediately, said the prescription he gave her before wouldn’t work on this germ and gave her another one.  15 minutes in and out. 

Well, that was last week and this weekend, after taking the medication, her problem hadn’t cleared up.  In fact, it had become worse, so we went back to emergency this morning.   Today, there was a lot of people waiting but my wife just walked up to the doctor, told him he made a mistake and he agreed and wrote her another script, 15 minutes.  As of now, it appears this drug is working and hopefully, no more trips to emergency. 

My observations after the past week….  that emergency here is not as terrifying and as difficult as it is back home.  That you dont have to be near death to be seen and if you’re balsy enough to talk to the doctor, he’ll take you out of order.  And no one will complain if you’re to the point, not chatty, and fast.  The care here is competent.  The bells and whistles of a US or Canadian emergency room aren’t there.  The walls could use a good painting.  But the place is clean and the staff courteous and the care good.  

Unfortunately for my wife, she’s paying for all the years we lived in Canada and she was never sick.  She’s being punished for that… plagued by a variety of illnesses… which seems like just a run of bad luck and nothing more serious.  We’re looking forward to when it’s over.  Sometime in the next week, I’ll go over her other experiences.. and one of mine – which in retrospect is quite funny but I wasn’t laughing at the time 🙂

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