We all hear of long wait times for pretty much any procedure or examination at Ontario hospitals. People complain about it on social media seemingly daily.
Too rarely we hear of when people are whisked right through. It happens. Probably more than we realize. That’s why I have to let folks know about my recent visit.
After a morning assignment one day last week, I finally decided to get an X-Ray on my hip that my doctor has told me to get when I saw her Dec. 5. Yeah, I’ve been busy.
But I digress. Back to the hospital. It was about 11:30 a.m. and I thought I’d have a shot at a decent parking spot, given the fact it was before the lunch hour.
I was right, scoring a spot on Emma Street. And there was still time in the meter – 51 minutes, to be exact. Considering I had no idea how long I’d be, I plugged the meter with quarters until it maxed out at two hours, costing me maybe $1.25 tops.
Yeah, just $1.25 spent for parking at the hospital. I was already smiling.
I limped into the main entrance, took my number and went to sit down. My butt barely brushed the seat when the woman behind the counter called my number.
In no time, I headed down the hall and turned into diagnostics, where I again handed over my number, along with some paperwork. I settled down to wait and noticed the TV had HGTV on and the show “Leave It to Bryan” was on. I love renovation shows! And I love the fact the TV wasn’t tuned to a kids’ channel, talk show, some judge show, or a soap opera – basically what you get stuck watching in the ER.
Next thing I know, I got called up to confirm my paperwork and was told an X-Ray tech would call my number when they were ready for me. Since No. 16 had just been called and I was No. 23, I thought I’d be waiting for a little bit at least, certainly long enough to finish watching Bryan renovate the basement. The numbers are given out at main reception, but surely a good portion of folks would be at the hospital for diagnostic work, right?
Nope. I waited all of maybe five minutes before the tech called my number. She had me change into a hospital gown that gave the other folks in diagnostics a chance to see that I sported a nice, clean pair of boxer/briefs on this day. I’m sure I looked pretty ridiculous walking down the hall in a T-shirt, underwear, too-small hospital gown white socks and winter boots.
For the next 15 minutes, I had to lie on a cold table and have the technician take numerous shots of my hip joints. She was polite enough not to comment on my garb (I rocked those boots!).
In no time, I was dressed again and heading back to my truck. Total time from when I parked the vehicle to when I returned to it: less than 40 minutes. It turns out I didn’t even need to add any coin to the meter.
But I didn’t care. In fact, I looked forward to the gift I gave the next person who parked there. Maybe their time at the hospital went as smoothly as mine did.
I spent Saturday in Toronto where I attended a memorial service for an uncle who passed away last week from cancer. I’m really tired of this disease; I’ve seen too many family members and friends felled by it.
That’s a big reason I’m involved with Relay for Life in Chatham this year.
In my Uncle Ken’s case, cancer may have won, but it didn’t stop him from enjoying life to the fullest. Not many cancer victims live to the age of 92 and were on a cruise a mere three weeks prior to their death.
He will be missed, especially his joie de vivre. But he showed many of us how to live.