Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Exhausted. Too exhausted to talk about everything that’s wrong with the medical profession. But not too exhausted to gripe about why this American bureacracy has made me exhausted.

My grandmother went in the hospital today. Don’t worry. She’s okay. When you’ve got a mother and grandmother living in old folks’ home, you get used to this. Between the two of them, we’ve had five hospital stays in the last year alone, all of which turned out to be nothing. See, if you or I feel particularly bad, we wait it out or make a doctor’s appt. When you’ve had a paralyzing stroke like my mom or are a 90-year-old grandmother, they rush you to the emergency room at the drop of the hat or blood pressure. And there you’re bound to stay overnight so they can run standard tests at the whopping rate of one EKG or blood test every eight hours or so.

Earlier, my sister and I talked to my grandma, and she sounded fine. So we waited for them to transfer her from St. Joseph’s in Burbank to her insurance-providing hospital, Kaiser Permanente in Panorama City.

When we went to Kaiser tonight, the nurse said, "Oh, I’m glad you’re here. Because when St. Joe’s brought your grandmother over, they forgot to send her medication, too."


"So, one of you will have to go over and get it."

Why is the hospital’s screw-up MY responsibility?

Because they don’t care. I asked what would happen if we hadn’t shown up. Well, no one was gonna transport the meds. Kaiser would have to re-order all her prescriptions, and hopefully get them filled by tomorrow, including the ones, that, y’know, keep her alive and shit.

Okay, but St. Joe’s would at least mail out the old drugs, right? They wouldn’t just discard bottles of medications worth up to three bucks a stinkin’ pill?!

The nurse just kinda shrugged.

This started to get my blood boiled. I found myself energetic with rage, whereas my sister was already really tired.

So at 10:30PM guess what Mikey had to do. Mikey had to drive. Mikey hates driving. In the Valley. Mikey hates the Valley. Yep, he had to drive through the Valley from one hospital to another.

Anyway, now I gotta go to bed so I can get up early and go for a run.

Why? ‘Cause Mikey ain’t gonna get old, dammit. You can guess how he feels about hospitals.


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