Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I did not get the memo...

So, when did hospitals start allowing cell phones??

And when did hospitals do away with hand washing?

And who is the cute interior bulemic anorexic decorator that decided dining chairs with arms will fit any fat momma in the waiting room and recovery room?

Our son had a "procedure" on Monday at the same hospital in which he was born. Twenty-three years ago. He has been a pretty healthy kid. Sure, we have had our share of broken arms, stitches, and the downing of a triaminic liquid bottle when he got mad at the age of 3 when I gave some pretty orange medicine to his brother, but not to him. But, when they asked when was the last time Ben was there, I had to stop and think. Was it the time he was jumping off the table at church in the youth room to try and impress a girl and needed a few staples in his head? Or the time he flew out of the swing at church camp? No, that would have been at a different hospital.

I was so tempted to leave Dr. Bergstrom a note when I saw she was still doing surgery. The very doctor that delivered Ben...and the doctor (Mycoskie) that set a broken arm when he fell off the jungle gym on the playground...listed up on the white board in recovery.

Ben's procedure required deep cleansing of an area. And oh, the phone gals will lie to you. One told me a fleet enema was something you drink the night before. The pharmacist laughed at that one. And one tole me all Ben needed to do was sign forms at the "pre-assessment" appointment. Nah. They wanted money. upfront. I am thankful our insurance covers this, but proving that to the hospital and plugging in all the correct numbers on the pre-registration form took an hour. And Ben called from the pre-assessment appointment with the glad news that they wanted money!

What if we shopped for other services this way?? Let's say our plumber required two grand up front just to come out and look at your plumbing needs. And you had to give reams of information about your employment and insurance and social security numbers to that plumber's secretary before any work was done? You'd have to plan those stopages in advance! And forget emergencies unless you were an illegal alien, and then you'd have to call the plumber at that establishment (JPS) who specialize in trama...I mean, illegals.

The waiting room was pretty empty at 5:55am. I wondered where everyone was. Ben was prepped, and bored by 6:15am, and got to wait a whole hour before being taken to surgery. Thankfully, his doctor prayed over him before the surgery. Ben was glad, and comforted, but alarmed because his doctor looked tired and sick. After the hour long surgery, the doctor found us in the waiting room and gave us all the instructions. We should have taken notes, as the nurse later informed us that our going home instructions were given orally by the doctor. Good thing both Bob and I were listening. Oh joy...now to convince Ben, that yes, the doctor said no sex until you are married...

The pilonidal sinus/cyst was deep and old and even had a hair mass ball. (we joked about the tumor twin from the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding. the recovery nurse was not amused as she had not seen the movie being neither Greek nor fat) A pilonidal sinus/cyst is a guy thing. When a guy hits puberty, some hairs on the base of the spine area turn inward, get infected, and plague the victim until removed by surgery. Our son James had one excised at the Children's Hospital when when he was 18 years old. Being the oldest "child" on the surgery list, he got to wait all day without food or water for his turn. Ben says his did not act up until he left home almost four years ago. And having left home and being independent, he was not longer on our insurance. Ben is a hard worker, and enjoyed figuring out how to install solar panels on roofs. We enjoyed hearing his stories, and shuddered at the perils, and need for insurance. He had to resort to going to JPS a few times for antibiotics and he usually waited until a rainy day, as it ate a whole day of work, and rainy days they could not get on roofs.

When Ben returned to college to get his electrical license, and became a full time student, we saw this one-year window left to put him back on insurance, and get his pilonidal sinus cleaned out. We found a doctor on our insurance policy through no help at all of our primary "caregiver" and set this date between semesters to give Ben a chance to recover. Ben is grateful. And said some whacky things coming out of anesthesia...and one of his concerns was, "how much was this going to cost?" We are trying to plant the idea that he needs to be ready, willing and able to do this for his son someday, if necessary. And sadly, in our day, your insurance coverage is almost if not more important than your job. Having that insurance card, and pink check in sheet from the pre-assessment appointment was Ben's ticket past the security guard in the hospital lobby. It told them we had paid. It said we had money. It revealed we had jumped through the hoops. It meant we did not have to share a waiting room with anyone else for a few hours.

But, cell phones are okay now? And the waiting room has wifi. I guess the employed with good insurance need access to their laptops so they can continue to be employed and insured.

The hand washing bothered me. I was the only one I saw wash hands all day, and the sink in the public bathroom was so shallow that it was hard to wash and not recontaminate myself. The bathroom was as big as any you'd see at Subway or McDonalds. I hate the touchless towel dispensers...took me a while to figure that one out. I don't get out much. And they don't have them at Walmart.

There are these pumps at the door, and a nurse or aide supposidly took a squirt or foam germ killing hand spit when she came into your room. The nurse spends 90 percent of her time plugging things into her rolling computer. Don't you know that keyboard is sanitary??! ha. And any time she touches you or your IV or helps haul you to the bathroom, she puts on a glove. Yes, the very unsterile hand that grabs a glove is suddenly ready, able and touching everything---from the hand crank on your bed to the doorway as you totter, to the light switch. Fear not. No need to wash your hands in this modern age. Who knew?

Our son was drugged up and sent home by noon. No appetite, and one bout of the throw ups from the pills on an empty stomach, so we are encouraging crackers and "with food" with the pills. But, he is able to get himself up and down, and to the bathroom. And I felt bad waking him up to take a pill at 1am, but I did not want him to wake up having gone too long the first night. He is suppose to be able to shower tomorrow, and in six weeks, but one hundred percent.

If someone had told me, when I gave birth to Ben there at Arlington Memorial, hey, you'll be back in 23 years for a small, hour long surigical "procedure"...how the years have flown. And the window of our helping is quickly closing.. As it should be, but what kind of world will our grandchildren see? Right now, our grandchildren are all treated at military hospitals. Our prayer for Ben is that God bring along a good Christian girl in His perfect timing.

Ben knows way more about drugs than we do. He dated a pharmacy tech for over a year, and also watches these shows on tv that we have never seen. He called them up online on hulu dot com. Oh, my. Bob and I are getting an education. Please pray that Ben see through the agendas and propaganda. Sodom and Gomorrah were worse than what Hollywood puts out?

1 comment:

Bob said...

Yeah, I clearly remember the doctor's "no sex before marriage" thing.