Canada's healthcare system is hopelessly sclerotic. We need to wake up: Neil Macdonald
2019-06-12 from cbc.ca
Abruptly, last week, I wound up in an ambulance. Something in my hip had gone sideways, and was delivering a lesson on pain.
As we rolled up to the emergency ward, one of the paramedics leaned in: "They might not get to you until tomorrow morning, man. That's the way it is now. I'm going to give you another shot before we go in to keep you going."
And into my arm slithered a dose of morphine sulfate, with all its cottony comforts.
Later, when my mind cleared, I found myself in the business end of the health care system Canadians brag about so much: a big, crowded ward full of hurting people, some of them yelling profanely, and few staff in sight. A voice on the public address system made deliberately incomprehensible announcements — Code Blue, Code White, code whatever.
Eventually, a rushed-looking nurse waggled her fingers near my face, intent on making me understand it would be many more hours before they could get to me. And then she was gone.
As the pain intensified (What do you answer when someone asks "On a scale of 10, where is your pain now?" Is 10 a first-degree burn? Childbirth? It's not that bad, but it's pretty freaking bad. I don't know. Nine? Will nine get me something?), I began to groan. You can't not groan, no matter how much you see yourself as a stoic.
A phone attendant at the nurse's station told me, impatiently, that there were no doctors or nurses available. Finally, I just yelled, and I hate yelling. You've completely lost control when you yell. I figured I'd at least get the security detail's attention. But a doctor showed up, telling me she'd heard me across the hospital.
I gasped something about not caring.
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