Sunday, January 2, 2011

They say we did, but we didn't DO Health Care.

Boca West Community Hospital.  My nephew was born there.  I've heard from so many what I great hospital it is.  State of the art in birthing babies.... but I'll tell you what, they are no state of nothing when it comes to the care of the babies!  I visited the Pediatric floor to see Matthew, our Murphy's Matt.   

Last week Matt complained of severe pain in his groin... and voila~! appendicitis.  So, our Murphy rushed him to Boca West.  He was taken from ER into surgery and then.... 

There can not be anything more terrifying in the world than worry over the immediate health of your child. Your little child.  How would I cope, I wonder?  To have a friend, who is family, going through it certainly brings into perspective what is actually important in life and what can hang fire until real life is attended to.... on New Years Day.  
The complaints here are not about the things that a parent can handle... such as washing her child, changing the diapers, changing the bed sheets, rushing out of the hospital to buy what the hospital has always had and now mysteriously doesn't provide, like fucking diapers! or wash clothes! ... it's about the complete and total lack of cooperation on the part of the nursing staff and the hounding this family took from the administrator drone dogging Kim even as she was in tears trying to clean her son without any kind of bath linen because "we don't have that" was the stat response from the nurses.  Her son was going through a reaction to penicillin, red faced, hives, blood pressure and pulse rising... the nurses argued with her as to what was going on and when finally they attended to this symptom it was barely in time.  The point is, a mother and father with their little boy, a mother and father who have sacrificed to be able to have health insurance for the family, through multiple fiscal emergencies and calamities, are now being hounded for a co-payment, sans any kind of compassion, and then ignored by what nursing staff is on the floor.  I noticed not one nurse in the halls or at the desk when arriving or leaving.  Unusual is not a well formed description... something is WRONG.  And imagine Joe's dismay when he re-entered the Peds ward and the fellow swiping his card referred to it as "the dungeon".   To a parent who is worried sick that his son could die from the lack of care in this horrid place.  Imagine it!  Do you have a precious little boy with sweet eyes and a gentle heart?  The awful truth?
It's not unusual to have to wait for a nurse or care to come when it's something like an IV or non life threatening situation ... nurses are always busy.  Not these nurses.  I witnessed them sort of hanging around a bed they were supposed to be moving for twenty minutes.... while the need for their care was being silently demanded by sick children all along the hall.  I was astonished.  I was crazed with anger.  I was heartsick for Kim and Joes and Matt. 
When I was confined to a hospital bed in the state hospital... Delray Emergency... because I am a small business owner and can not afford insurance I was on 'state aid' or Medicare.  I received very good care.   The exception being the 'orderlies' or nurses' assistants.... they were generally immigrants working for a very low wage and they were actually mean.  I said MEAN.  They would wake patients at 2 am, 5 am, (generally whenever you fell asleep lol) by shoving your bed or kicking it and their temperament was severely nasty.  The nurses told me they used to complain about them and the quality of care decline they felt these barely 'trained' individuals were responsible for.   But admin threatens their jobs if they bitch.  Yep.  They were apologetic for the lack of care these folks were distributing through the hospital.   

It's about PROFIT.  
Doctors are rare who care.  
Nurses, the primary HEALERS of the health care industry, vacillate in quality of care from one block to the next in hospitals.  

My neighbor, works as a teller for Wacovia Bank.  On the day before New Years Eve she went in for a root canal procedure.  The dentist did something very wrong ... I don't know what she did, but my neighbor still has a face double the size and she looks as though she's been into a bad car wreck.  Black and blue eyes, nose, side of her mouth.  That's something applied, administered, procedure bad... somefuckingthing WRONG!   She's told me that she called her boss to say she didn't know whether she would be able to work tomorrow.  She explained her condition.  Her boss, in the midst of a holiday season, warned her that not coming in, as they were in a rush for new customers, would result in her dismissal.  The truth is that once her boss sees her, no doubt she'll be sent home.  Because anyone who sees my neighbor will question the policies of an institution who make anyone in this condition work.  I would think.  
But look how many Republicans won this last election.   Yes, I do think Rethug politicians are responsible for much of this.... they have allowed and enable Corporate America to be the masters of the universe.  As Democrats fell asleep at the switch.
Kindness and mercy are a pox upon profit.  
My neighbor is an 'everyday' lady.  She grew up locally.   She went to high school and paid attention.  When she could afford to she went to a 'junior' college to learn more.  Her job with the bank is big part of her life... in the regard that she considers herself well done for having been able to gain the job and to have the talents she needs to be a bank teller.  She was quick to say she understood that the bank needed to make profits and she needed to comply with that.  I was aghast!  Then I began to see and understand, for my neighbor, the job in the bank is something she's accomplished with her life.  I admire her for it.  I try to remember that she's not so aware of the corporate overlording ... she considers herself grateful for being given the job in the bank.  She, self depreciating.   Self sacrificing.  Corporate property, almost.  Her real love is her son.  He's a toddler whose father left as soon as the paychecks from her job stop coming in, after she had her son.  I'm careful not to say anything to hurt her feelings because she is genuinely doing her very best ... her very best.  
But I come home to a few problems and I am put 'in place' by the challenges of my neighbor and my Murphy.  I cry for them.  Injust.  Wrong.  

What was it that Marley said to Scrooge?  "Mankind was my business"

We have to make choices that change the forecast of futures by these conditions.  Because mankind is our business.  Making a healthy home for our children and neighbors is our business.  
It's time to evolve.  
A new year? 
Lets make it a new vision... one where mankind is our common business... lets place our creativity there.

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