10 December 2017

The Dengue Misadventure - Paranaque's Dysfunctional Hospital

We were at the fourth floor of the nearest hospital from our house. We went to the emergency room earlier but our case was deemed as not an emergency. So now here we are, fever for three days and fourth on the list. Irene was having a difficult time managing her chills but we still had to wait. Everyone had to. A woman I saw at the emergency room was ahead of us, also waiting. When asked to step on a weighing scale, she walked but started to vomit. The weighing scale had to wait. In this hospital, their definition of an emergency is still a mystery to me.
Photo from Google Maps
It was finally our turn and the Family Physician tried to figure out what's going on with Irene. The doctor prescribed paracetamol for the fever and ibuprofen for the headaches. The doctor also ordered for a urinalysis, a complete blood count, and a test to rule-out dengue. She even asked if Irene wanted to be admitted and gave her an admission order anyway. Things are going well until she mentioned that she won't be at the hospital the following day but the day after that. This means she wont be around to interpret the results. "Just ask any doctor here tomorrow to interpret your results." WTF?!

Irene had her labs done but the result wont come out until after four hours. It was already 8PM so we decided to just go back the next day. At home, the fever still persisted and reached an alarming 39.8 degrees celsius. But hey, this is not yet an emergency - said the hospital.

Tuesday, November 28

We went back to the hospital to get the results. I was also having a 38.5 degree fever at this point but just had to soldier on for Irene. From the HMO office we were forwarded to the 6th floor, this time to a multi-specialty doctor. The check-up was very casual. So casual that you would think the doctor was not serious. "Baka Dengue yan!" (Maybe it's Dengue!) "Patingin nga ng labs" (Let me see the labs) "Ayun, Dengue nga!" (That's it, it's Dengue!).

Positive for Dengue Virus
Thank you Dr. Obvious. He then asked if we want to be admitted since treatment for Dengue is just water and rest, and just let the infection run its course. This I believe was the turning point. Had the doctor assessed his patient thoroughly, I don't think Irene would get worse as she did in the next few days.

After we showed him the admission order from the doctor a day before, he was on seems-like-i-don't-need-to-do-anything mode. Even joking that we'll be lucky if there's an available room at the hospital, chuckling like it was an inside joke that clearly we were not on.

CBC results were available in less than 20 minutes yet we were told to wait for four hours.
Upon checking with admissions, we were 6th in line. I expected this, hearing the same problem for a patient the day before. The office gave their number and asked us to just call them to check if there's an available room for us. Great.

We went home. Both of us with fever. She'd on her fourth day, I'm on my first. Hopefully it's not Dengue too. Before we went to bed her gums started to bleed. This was getting serious fast.

Next: The Dengue Misadventure - A Tale of Two Hospitals

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