Longwoods Blog

From the Blog, Downing’s Views, Sunday, July 3, 2011



I was carried into the first of four hospitals on, appropriately, April Fool’s Day. The joke was on me. From health to death’s door in two days. And for the first time since May, 1957, I haven’t written anything for 106 days since they don’t allow computers in intensive care.

My descent into the hell of several months of hospital left me unable to walk until a day ago, and holes over my tail bone which may take more months to heal. I never guessed that my leg muscles would turn into jelly after all those weeks imprisoned in a hospital bed, the first part in isolation and intensive care.

It left me with a profound respect for many nurses, and a hatred for some. I also think hospitals trying to go without registered nurses where possible, and playing games to keep them off permanent staff where they would get benefits, is a costly disgrace.
I think if  St. Joseph’s had sufficient staff at night so I didn’t have to lie in my own filth for 20 to 30 minutes, I wouldn’t have ended up with three enormous bedsores which still are burrowing in my bum despite a range of enough medicine to kill a bull.

Turns out that everything you’ve heard about American hospital bills is absolutely true. The bills are still flying but it looks like they averaged $8,000 a day. Never leave home without travel insurance.

Read the full text here.

This entry was posted on Monday, July 18th, 2011 at 9:46 am and is filed under Longwoods Online.