Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

My Visit to a Chinese Hospital- Red Army Hospital Part 5….

Posted by w_thames_the_d on September 8, 2010


This is a mult-blog post or post blog about my visit to a hospital in the PRC. It is the honest to goodness truth, (all of the events I mean). To summarize the previous posts, I paid about 70 U$ for a bunch of meds and other things that were supposed to make me better. I was diagnosed with “Beijing lung” which could be anything from emphesema to allergies, I dont think they knew what I had, but they e-rayed me and I pissed off the ‘doctor’ who helped me, the guy was not in hospital scrubs as were none of the staff. In the xray room doctors were actually smoking, no lie.
Prior to that I had blood draw or laser-ed out of my finger almost leaving me disabled. No where did I see sinks, nor at any time were protective gloves worn….
I forget where I left off and am too lazy to check, but i must have gone back to the doctor who was wearing Bermuda shorts. The guy said that I had something, but he would give me meds and fix me right up.
The doctor who spoke rudimentary English took me to get the meds. The pharmacy is what most places would call it, but this place looked more like a crack house in Watts. The only opening was a little slit and with my experience with the blood letting (last guy who drew blood from me), I was apprehensive. I thrust the paper into the slot with the names of all the meds. The guy behind the screen who was military (it is a Red Army hospital) eyed me as if I were a spy. He was gone for a matter of minutes and my cough got worse. He reappeared with what appeared to be mustard on his face, I guess he’d gone to take a break.
The man then proceeded to fill one of those damned Wal-mart like blue carrier things with all kinds of Chinese meds. There were 24 bottles, pills, whoopie cushions, stuff like that . Needless to say, I was like WTF?
I grabbed a freaking bottle of saline solution and asked what was up. The doc looked at me, he said I needed injections. I was like fk i need an injection of this. here is what I learned
1- in China an injection is actually an IV or intravenous drip
2-in China they still use glass bottles for IV drips
3- in China they give you the freaking bottles for the IV drip and you have to CARRY them to the nurses station EACH time you go there
So I grabbed the bottles and asked what I was supposed to do. The guy says each time you come to the hospital you bring this, he shows me a bottle, a syringes, some other vials of dark stuff and cotton swabs etc. I was like, but this is a hospital, dont they have this stuff in the nurses station? He says, not in china. Again I shake my head and amble off toting a ton of bottles and powders and the like.
The guy pulls me aside and warns me not to leave my bottles in the IV area, as someone might steal them. So I am in the PRC in the Red Army hospital about to get an IV drip, there are military personnel all round and I have to carry all my meds with me, even the syringes or someone might steal them. I say ask how many times I have to come , he says two times per day for four days.
I look in the freaking IV room and its like One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest
To Be Continued

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