The Hospital (Life, Death, and Dollars in a Small American Town) by Brian Alexander

The Hospital: Life, Death, and Dollars in a Small American Town by [Brian Alexander]

Bryan, Ohio is a small town with small town problems. Keeping the town afloat. Keeping the hospital open. Alexander takes us into small town hospitals and the quickly disappearing small town hospitals and medical care.

Phil Ennen, CEO of the hospital is fighting what looks like a losing battle. They are losing money and the big guys are waiting around the corner to grab up another local hospital.

You find out a lot of things you may have never thought about if you didn’t grow up in a small town. I don’t think I have ever given it a thought since I’ve always lived in the city. On a road trip this past year we took the back roads to explore Oklahoma and it was then that I saw entire towns dying when the hospitals go down. Miles and miles from any form of emergency care or just continued care. It was shocking how the towns were just empty.

We see real people in real life or death situations and the consequences from lack of dependable medical care. We have one such town right now trying not to close its doors or give in to a buy out. With a lot of small towns still recovering from the 2008 recession, money is not exactly flowing in. People can’t afford to drive 2 hours in an emergency and they can’t afford healthcare.

With the Medical and Hospital Industry puts money over care, we all suffer. Look at the situation we are in now. Covid. Rural hospitals aren’t able to care for the people in their small community. Even big cities are ill equipped to fight this one. Why? This gave me a new insight into the issues we all will face.

NetGalley/ St. Martin’s Press March 09, 2021

Candy Cane Lane from Celestial Seasonings Teas

Well, this picture says it all. I love this tea. It’s peppermint with vanilla notes that leave a feeling of creaminess. Very special tea and I adore it.

A few weeks back I had shared the tip that the holiday teas were now out. I ordered everything except for this one. I checked my list, saw a few packages in the holiday rotation, and moved on. At least one thing had gone well.

We were back to the hospital Friday. With OU Boy running fever, getting these odd red circles all over his body, and having mood swings, his doctor said to get there now. We did. It looked like a ghost town.

On the left side are about 10 police cars, 4 ambulances and a couple of choppers. We pulled up to the Valet and I ran in the first entrance and asked for Valet. The security guard said, ” We only do valet for patients who arrive alone.” I said, “Dude, I can’t drive right now. Call Dean Magee Eye Institute.”

His reply, as they were wheeling OU Boy back was, “Can’t you just close that eye and drive?”. Before I could throat punch him, a police officer came over and informed the guard it was illegal for me to do that and he would park it for me.” I sent OU Boy a text telling him I’m not allowed to even come in the waiting room. I have to stand outside. It was appropriate that I was dressed in my RBG sweater that said ” I Dissent”. Yep.

Long story short, he took another test and checked out AMA. We will happily die at home, thank you very much. Still haven’t received any results but found out if we had stayed, they would have flown him out of state because they are full. Then it was my turn to run fever and cough and just want to be drugged. And the ONLY thing that was going to make this bearable was Candy Cane Lane Tea. I heated the kettle and opened the box. EMPTY. Okay, okay, just open the others. EMPTY. All gone. Someone stole all of my tea. The Tea Fairy I suppose. Panic ensued and OU Boy made a quick dash to Sprouts and bought them out. He ordered on-line and picked up at the curb, so no germs. That is why I love him. He never even questioned the notion that I was delirious and could have had peppermint. Nope, he loves the hell out of me.

So we have lain about for days whining and generally just watching Netflix getting ready for The Crown. And finishing up this beauty that came out today! We have loved it and so needed it at this point in time.

So, yeah, that about sums up another crazy week. My Momma sent me a picture of her thumb and an empty paper plate. Curacao is back on the table for very soon.

The little people in trumpian land are quiet as the movie Quiet. Crickets people. Zip, Zero, Nada. And my gosh the adrenaline and tension release had us in emotional but happy tears.

What’s new in your area?

xx P

Happy Sunday! I hope you are all healthy and safe.

Oklahoma is having a second surge that is worse than the first one. Also troubling is that this week we added 2 more categories of positive age groups. Under 2 and 6 to 10. Our major positive spreaders are in the 18 to 35 group and next the 35 to 49 group. I’m not in any of those groups so I guess my natural tendency to stay at home is finally paying off. OU Boy and I are perfectly fine at the moment.

His heart is working just fine and for once no one is hurting anywhere. I swear when you hit 40 your entire body just says, ” That’s it. All systems shutting down.” I have found the way to encourage OU Boy is to keep telling him how cute he looks after losing ten pounds. He’s awfully vain and it seems to be working.

We may get Fall today! At least for a day or so. It’s 11 a.m. and still grey outside and nothing is moving. This is suspicious behavior for OKC. The wind is always blowing. For the past couple of days it has been so bad I was not allowed outside due to the eye thingy. So instead I caught up on reviews, and binge watched The Haunting of Bly House which I liked less than the Haunting of Hill Manor. Even with the Stephen King Easter Egg in one of the scenes. I saw that, Stephen!

The election smack talk is heating up on Twitter but now that he is out of Twitmo, he is being careful. As I explained to him, it is possible to read something you disagree with and just move on.

I bought this book for my granddaughter and then read it myself. She loves mysteries. Sherlock Holmes, Agatha Christie, all the old ones. But now Sherlocks daughter and Watson’s son are hooking up solving crimes and it’s one of the best YA series!

The Covid thing is putting holidays in jeopardy. I don’t care for my relatives enough to travel 12 hours to eat turkey and get infected. North Dakota, I’m talking to you! Get your shit together and stop infecting people so we can go to Canada.

As I sit here in my flamingo pajamas looking out the window I am totally grateful that we are here and in good health. And I wish that for all of you. No holiday or gift giving event is a good enough reason to be foolish and infect grandma and grandpa with a deadly virus.

Now I am off to feed my squirrel that I have befriended during isolation. She had triplets 2 weeks ago and is chowing down now. What is the weirdest thing you have done during lockdown?

xx P

Oklahoma is lying to the country and the people! 5 Days in OU Med.

Before I get into our journey through the hospital, let me tell you how yummy this steep tea is! And it tastes even better in my Georgia Dawgs cup!

It’s actually good for blood pressure, which brings us to our story today.

For months now OU Boy has been throwing up every morning like clockwork. No baby, no nothing. And every time he sat down he fell asleep immediately. Sunday night was a bad night. His arm was hurting, he couldn’t catch a breath and we knew from a lot of past experience that he was having a heart attack.

So his Cardiologist said go straight to the Emergency Department. And here begins the lies we have been told.

A housekeeper came to the car to get him in a wheelchair. No badge. No PPE. We then were put in the heart section of the ED. Not one time did I see anyone wearing a PPE gown. Masks, yes, all the nurses and doctors.

We heard over the loudspeaker constantly calling Code Blue to whatever room and that was soon followed by Terminal Cleaning needed in whatever room.  We literally had to wait for someone to die to get into ICU. You can’t leave once you are there, so I had a lot of time to worry and watch and listen to the nurses and residents.

The news came on and the reporter said Oklahoma had 538 active cases. The nurse snorted and said, “Like we don’t have that many here alone.” I asked if everyone that came through was tested first. “NO. We are going broke and can’t afford to test everyone. We were tested right away and had results in an hour maybe.

Our nurses had only worked here for two weeks and were unfamiliar with our codes and setup. But they were amazing. For instance, there are NO urinals in the entire ED. Our nurse stole one she found in the OR. There are empty glove boxes in the rooms. There are no chairs, so I slept on the floor. The only PPE gown I saw was stashed under some towels in the cupboard still sealed.

Every single room, including the broom closet, is full of sick people. As I waited outside of OR, it was shift change. That is when I hear all of the nurses talking about going elsewhere. Talking about how their interviews went at other facilities. We never saw housekeeping except for the lady with no name tag that brought us in. Also, no pillows. Or blankets.

I waited for 6 hours for someone to call me or come out and let me know if he was even alive, because there were times in the night that he was not for a few seconds. No one came. Just me and the little man mopping. Because only one person per patient is allowed in and everyone had left for the day. Finally I saw a nurse and asked her to help me. She did and I will be forever grateful.  He had 4 100 percent blockages which they cleaned out the stents and even put in an extra. 

We came home late Thursday. It was the worst cluster f*** you have ever seen. But now I know I’ve been lied to. And I’m pissed about that. Shame on you Governor Shitt and shame on you little man trump. If you get nothing out of this but the fact that we had to wait for someone to DIE to get a bed while my husband was flat lining in the ED. This isn’t a hoax, hospitals are overflowing with sick people and no equipment. 

Thankfully OU Boy feels like he can run a marathon. He can not of course as they went in through his groin. But at least he is alive and we know we don’t have the plague. So that was our week. How was yours?

Stay Safe

xx P