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ER: STAT

The Emergency Room.  The three most dreaded words a sick person can hear, short of “Call the Coroner”, that is – I recently had occasion to visit this fine institution known as the “ER” not once, but twice in a week.

This is the court of last resort for the desperate, those who are either too poor to have medical coverage and a family physician, or too middle class to be able to afford the good docs.  Who knew neurologists were nearly as extinct as the Dodo Bird?  Have a pounding, six-day headache not responding to an Anna –Nicole-Smith level of prescriptions?  Just about to call Dr. Murray and see if he can get you some propofol?  Then get thee to an ER, ‘cause you ain’t gonna find a doctor in town to treat you.

The Emergency Room is such a welcoming place, particularly for those with mind-blowing headaches.  The bright, fluorescent lights.  The TV blaring Fox News in the corner.  The kids running around like they are at a McDonald’s playground.  Oh, and don’t forget the Greyhound-Bus-Depot-quality seating.  Those hard plastic seats separated with immoveable metal arm rests… just the place to get comfy and want to stay awhile.

Now, I am not saying the registration staff is unfriendly, but yesterday, while feeling my oats, I dashed out of the house to Toys R Us with my daughter.  Long story short, I over estimated my abilities and had to be carried out of TRU in a wheelchair.  The retail employees of a toy story were kinder and more sympathetic to me than the ER front staff.

That is not to say they were all uncaring.  After I got through Dragon Lady, whose twin sister must work at the DMV, everyone else behind the scenes was as pleasant as they could possibly be.  My main issue is that I never actually saw a physician.  The highest ranking medical personnel that crossed my path was a nurse practitioner.  I have no problems with a NP, and have used one as primary care in the past.  I am just saying, the bill must be in the thousands and I left in as much pain as I arrived – the first time – and I never saw any one with a medical degree.

And the NP spent about 5 minutes with me, the rest of the time; I had a nurse and nursing students.  I love students.  Everyone has to learn.  But it’s not like I am wanting a discount haircut at Edwina’s School of Beauty… I am DYING here (not really) and I need medical attention from someone who is not taking a TEST on the subject this Friday!

My second trip of the week was more successful, when I finally saw a doctor of medicine.  And I am really not criticizing anyone in the field.  No one works harder than those in the medical profession.  It is a thankless, never-ending job of dealing with human misery and I could not do it.  I think it is amazing they are able to stay as focused on you as a human being as they do, when you are just one more cog in a never-ending wheel of sickness and injury.

But please Lord, next time I need specialized medical care, I beg you, let me be able to get an appointment.

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About reneadijab

Renea Dijab

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6 Comments on “ER: STAT”

  1. Rachel Says:

    Hey Hey Hey, now us lowly nursing students need fresh meat to practice on. The cadaver is starting to stink 🙂

    Reply

  2. Lyn Edlin Says:

    What happened? This is why I go to Dr.Oz for my medical advice, now if I could just make him make a house call.

    Reply

  3. Tara Donnell Says:

    The average nurse practitioner in the US is as knowledgable or more so than their medical counterparts, receiving on average 8 or more years of university education in addition to the heaps of experience they have to obtain to get where they are. They statistically spend more time with their patients and provide a more holistic level of care than an MD, with patient outcomes that rival or exceed their medical counterparts, particularly in the ER (I did a dissertation on this subject last year). And they do it for a fraction of what a doctor charges to grace you with his or her presence. Having worked for years as a nurse I can honestly say that people have this blind worship and trust for doctors that is OFTEN misplaced, and are unjustifiablly wary of NP’s.
    That aside, i feel for you being treated like cattle in the ER. It is the worst place to end up with a pounding headache unless they very quickly drug you up…

    Reply

    • reneadijab Says:

      I had a NP as my primary “Lady Bits” professional in VA, that was recommended to me by Roz – and who I also think you may have used… only got to see her twice since I lived there 13 months… but I actually PREFER an NP in that scenario than a doc… I have always found them to be more women-centric, than even a female doc… and you are right… the specialist I saw yesterday, gave me the opposite “opinion” of the ER doc… so it was all for naught… except for that wonderful shot in my neck… never thought I would be grateful to be jabbed in the neck with a needle.

      Reply

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