Sunday 23 September 2012

Horrid hospitals

I had just written a long post about my horrific hospital stay but writing and thinking about the hospital made me angry so I cancelled it. Angry because I don't want to remember or think about the incompetent doctors and nurses. Let's just say that after 17 days in hospital I saw my new born daughter a total of 4 times. In order to see her I had to cry, yell and demand that someone call the maternal nurses and request they bring her down. Their excuse was always the same, they were too busy to bring her down. Too busy to let a person who almost died in a near fatal accident see her own flesh and blood. And they weren't busy since friends and family who were able to view bella bambina through the window reported that countless times they saw nurses sitting down watching tv. When they did bring her down the longest visit was 10 minutes the other visits a whole 2 minutes. I asked if I could feed her, no. I asked if she could stay longer, no. I asked basic information about her such as how much she weighed and they didn't know and never bothered to find out this information for me.

I am not saying that the entire public hospital in Cosenza is bad. I had already spent 10 days here when bel bambino was born. It wasn't the best start after they put my on a make shift bed in the gynaecology ward in a room with a pregnant girl who smoked copiously in the bathroom...but after 1 day I was transferred onto the maternity ward which was painted in eye pleasing pastel shades. I was not in the maternity ward this time, I was on the orthopaedic ward which is renowned as the worse ward in the hospital. Sponge baths for bed ridden patients don't exist. If you can't sit up to eat or drink then no one will help cut your food of pass you something. In this hospital (I cannot talk about other Italian hospitals) each patient is meant to have a relative who stays with them 24-7. The relative is meant to clean your body if you have the urge to be clean, the relative has to help you eat, open and close the windows for you, turn on or off your fan (since my room had no air conditioning and bel marito had to bring me a fan from home.) I learnt how to close my drip since no one comes and checks if your drip has finished, no one answers the bell when you call them numerous times. None of the nurses have the ability to clean you properly, none of the doctors answer your questions or can tell you when you are going home. Opps..I'm getting angry again so let's get back to bel bambino.

He was in the intensive care ward until Monday morning, a week after the accident. I had seen him 3 times in 4 days as the nurses there were more understanding and knew that I had to see him as much as he had to see me. He was out of danger and on Monday I said good bye to my 2 men. Bel bambino was being transferred to a hospital in Catanzaro. They were said to have excellent doctors who could asses his double fractured jaw. Bel marito told me that the public hospital was like a hotel. Bel marito had a bathroom in their room (my room had no bathroom) he had air conditioning (I had none) he was given a bed to sleep on and I think he was even fed! Bel bambino was constantly being checked, the nurses and doctors all bought him toys and clothes, even packets of nappies. It was very hard for me to be away from bel marito, bel bambino and bella bambina though. I spent the nights alone much to the anger of the nurses. If bel marito could not be with me then I didn't want his mother or someone else to stay. I wanted to be alone even if that annoyed the nurses since I had to call them to assist me.

The week passed slowly and on Friday bel marito and bel bambino came back to my hospital to have his leg checked out before going home. By now we had been in hospital for 12 days. The doctor checked his leg and then told us that bel bambino couldn't go home and was to be readmitted into hospital! The same doctor who had told us that after the Catanzaro hospital he could go home...The doctor who changes his mind every day. Thankfully, much to the distress of the nasty nurses on the orthopaedic ward, bel bambino was transferred into my room rather then taken to the paediatric ward. The nurses expressed their anger by offering us no assistance what so ever. Bel bambino was picking at  his scabs so I asked the nurses for a bandage or something to cover his thigh and they told us it was our responsibility as his parents to make him not pick his leg. Each time the nurses came in to give me an injection of a new drip he would cry. Naturally he was scared of strange people doing things to his mummy. When time came to change me they made bel marito leave the room. I asked them if bel marito could stay since bel bambino had become attached to his dad and cried when he was out of his sight but they forced him out of the room. Bel bambino was left crying and screaming on his bed all alone since my husband couldn't see me part naked according to them... (After this episode we argued and got him to stay in the room from then on.) Bel bambino never had his wounds treated, was rarely checked by the doctor, was never given attention or consideration. Nothing.

The anger is coming back so let me stop now, I won't pain you with the intimate details of my experience. At least now I am home, bed ridden with nuts and bolts everywhere...oh but that is just going to move me onto the next chapter! Public home help. Stay tuned.

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