Monday, March 08, 2004

Taiwan: 7
Sara: 0

Along with my ARC (alien resident card) I also have a health card - on the back of that health card there is space for 7 stamps...apparently the average resident is allotted 7 doctor's visits a year. Statistically speaking the 7 visits seemed to be more than adequate coverage for the average person - however, statistically speaking, I am the anomaly of the Taiwanese health care system. I was never a particularly ill person in Canada but it would seem that the eastern hemisphere is currently kicking my ass. I just obtained my 7th [note: final] stamp on my health card today.

The set up: last weekend; camping in the mountains; 3 am ? someone proposes a hike. The result: I fall on a rock, and in a noble attempt to save meniscus knee, I end up smashing my shin. There wasn?t a significant amount of blood loss; however, there surely was a significant flesh loss...admittedly, it hurt a lot, however, I opted for the ole? Doug Howe ?just grin and bear it? philosophy. When I got back to the city last weekend I went to the pharmacy to purchase the necessary supplies needed to fix myself ? the pharmacist looked at my leg and made the stitching motion [which I pretended not to understand], she then secured the necessities and also put Tylenol 3 in my bag ? stating: ?please, just take?. Admittedly, my leg may have been slightly worse than I might have wanted to believe...but I was still quite adamant that I could play doctor. leg keeps bleeding every day for the past week. It?s starting to look pretty ugly ? and I show it to a few select friends, all of whom turn their respective heads in horror ? and so finally I think maybe my leg?s worth the last stamp on my health card...alas, it?s late Saturday and I decide that I will wait until Monday after work. Saturday night: out late, significant amounts of alcohol consumed. Sunday morning: can?t quite get out of bed and by mid afternoon I am feeling quite ill, which I chalk up to the events of the previous evening...Sunday night: after dinner with friends I need to go home and go to sleep at approx. 7 pm [I have fever induced dreams of blood poisoning] ? I wake up at 7:30 the next morning only to call in sick ? I sleep until 3 pm. At this point, I realize that I may be horribly ill. I call a friend - he comes to pick me up and takes me to the hospital.
The climax: The doctor tells me I have an extremely high fever ? I show him my leg ? he scrutinizes it for some time...and then tells me that because the cut was all the way to the bone [I surely did not realize this] it is very infected. He maintains that, while I did do a good job of cleaning it daily, the infection is actually below the scab that has finally started to build...and thus the next hour is spent with him scrubbing away my flesh with steel wool and cutting away with his scalpel. Finally he orders me an IV ? and prescribes 5 pills/4 X a day.

So that has been my day...and now I am currently bored out of my mind because both the IV and the 20 hours of sleep that I got last night have resulted in keeping me wide awake.


Anonymous S devil said...

Wow, this actually happened? That's insane...but wow I had no idea that was how their health care system worked. :/

15 Feb 2011, 18:18:00  

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