Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Mary's desk

Mary: "Dr. Grumpy's office, this is Mary."

Mr. Hand: "Hi, I need to get in today. I may have had a stroke. My left arm isn't working."

Mary: "Well, you really need to go to ER for this."

Mr. Hand: "I know. I'm there now."

Mary: "You're in ER?"

Mr. Hand: "Yeah. I called 911, and they brought me here. I'm lying in back, waiting for the doctor."

Mary: "Okay, then..."

Mr. Hand: "I've been here about 5 minutes, and they haven't sent anyone in except a nurse. So if you have something open, I'll just come over there instead."

Mary: "No, you need to stay there. You'll probably need studies, and it's not safe for you to leave the hospital to come here if you're having a stroke."

Mr. Hand: "The ambulance is still out front. I could ask them to bring me over there."

Mary: "You need to stay there."

Mr. Hand: "Sorry. Had no idea caring for people was such a waste of your time."



Anonymous said...

Whatever you pay Mary, it's not enough!

stacey said...

Tell me again why patient satisfaction scores are so important that we base reimbursement on them?

Anonymous said...

He should be happy they're not making a big fuss over him. I always tell friends and family that, although it can be annoying to wait, if you're in the hospital and a great sense of urgency isn't being demonstrated that's typically a good sign that you're not circling the drain and about ready to croak.

Anonymous said...

Happens all the time.

We tell patients to go straight to the ER, they show up at the front desk two hours later with crushing chest pain, open fractures, arterial pumpers, etc.

Ivan Ilyich said...

Isn't cluelessness a neurological disorder? So it comes with the territory.

Packer said...

I did not know that Uber ran the ambulance squad too.

Renee said...

that's scary, aren't strokes one of those things where there's only a short time window to do something? Maybe ER already knew it wasn't a stroke?

McDuckGA said...

I live in a small town, with a small hospital, with a small ED (staffed mostly by local GPs who are trying to pay off their student loans). I found myself there in the middle of the night with excruciating epigastric pain (gall stones, duh). I had to wait a bit, because they had a LOL with COPD who they finally ended up intubating. The receptionist kept apologizing to me for the wait. I told her, "Hey, I'm breathing. I'm good". They all seemed very happy to have a patient patient, which I guess is a rarity.

Anonymous said...

The logic, or lack thereof, is amazing.

Anonymous said...

Whelp, at least he had the foresight to head to the hospital for immediate care, rather than wait until the Sports had all finished.

Erik said...

I realized a while ago that I'm no different now in the kind of work I do than when I was waiting tables in high school. Piece work for tips

Anonymous said...

Maybe the patient was expecting Mary to say that she'd be right over? Patient patient, a new health advocacy group. Impatient patients put their own and others' lives at risk sometimes.

Bink said...

Here's some explanatory reading that might help you understand and take precautions:

Part of having end-stage moronacy is that not only is the patient unaware they're affected, they believe others who have healthy and unmoronic reasoning are actually the ones affected.

Although not contagious, high exposure of an unaffected person to someone with this disease can result in transient loss of speech, involuntary head shaking and contraction of facial muscles (see moron-induced sneer), and violent hand gestures, either at the time of exposure, or delayed until recounting the exposure to friends at lunch.

Exposure is unavoidable, but blogging, close association with the unaffected (with or without mockery of the affected), caffeine, punching bags, walks, hugging animals, and whale sounds can reduce the incidence and severity of symptoms.

Unfortunately for those affected, the condition is lifelong, and the only treatment is gaffer tape and isolation - ineffective as due to the endemic nature of this disease, there will always be an untreated sufferer to break them out.

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