Hospital Run

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February 8th 2012
Published: March 19th 2012
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The nurses at the hospital were dressed like it was the 1950's.
A few years ago, I really could not handle going to hospitals. I don’t necessarily have the association of death with hospitals that many people do, but my dad spent a lot of time in them when I was a child, recovering from various surgeries. It didn’t bother me as a kid, so I’m not sure what changed my opinion over the years. I’ve improved significantly regarding going to hospitals in the past five years or so. I think part of that has to do with the fact that I’ve had to get over that negative feeling, since many of my hospital runs have been with campers or camp staff. Fortunately, I tend to be the hospital escort, rather than the hospital patient.

Anyways, when we were in Singapore, Griff started mentioning that he was having trouble hearing. He occasionally gets wax blockage in his ear that has to be flushed out by a doctor. Over the course of our stay in Thailand, it was getting painful (both physically painful for him, and a real pain for me when I got annoyed that he couldn’t hear what I was saying). He was hoping to wait until we returned
The Waiting Game...The Waiting Game...The Waiting Game...

The waiting room at Paolo Memorial Hospital. So clean!
to Canada, so he could visit his family doctor and get this resolved. I suggested that we call our travel insurance provider to see if this would be covered. I was wondering if this would impact flying at all.

We got the okay from the insurance provider to go to the local hospital (a ten minute walk, definitely convenient!) to get checked out. We walked in, and fortunately had a staff member who spoke English take us to reception to register. Fortunately, they accepted Griff’s driver’s license as a form of identification since he did not have his passport with him. The wait time was minimal before he saw a triage nurse, and then a doctor. I guess that’s how it is when you have to pay your own medical bills. The doctor discovered that he had blockage in both ears. He removed the wax from one ear successfully, but we had to return the following day for follow-up. They originally wanted us to come the next morning to see the ENT, but we had already booked our tour to see the tigers, etc. They were okay with us coming the next evening around 7pm.

As you know from my previous blog entry, we did not get back to our hostel until after 8pm the next evening. I had needed to call Sangam to confirm transportation arrangements, so we decided to divide and conquer. After I finished talking to Sangam, I walked to the hospital and waited for Griff in the waiting room. It wasn’t long before he emerged and we waited for his prescriptions.

I’m grateful that our hospital visits went smoothly, and were not too expensive, considering that Griff had to pay out of pocket at the time. He’ll be submitting a claim form once we’re back. It’s definitely a reminder to always have contingency money in cash and plastic while travelling in case something like this happens.


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