17 August 2011

More medical stuff, this time I'm mad

Yesterday, I was saying that I was happy for our medical system, and I am, but it's not all peaches and cream, as all of you know. The same hospital that I went to yesterday, is the one in this tragic story. Now, the CBC is getting more and more sensationalist (calling the baby a newborn for example is wrong, because officially, it's a stillbirth. The baby died before delivery), but the story has a big ring of truth to me. I delivered both Crackle and Pop at that hospital. Pop's delivery was, as the nurse put it, "nice and civilized". It was a planned c-section. Crackle's was a nightmare (the little shit had a 16.5'' head, was turned upside down and had his chin up. And I had the worst midwife on the planet). And it was a nightmare made worse by the fact that the two anaesthetists were busy with other surgeries, and they had to call in one from the lake he was fishing on. On April 1. Guess who thought it was an April Fools' joke and had to be called twice. Yeah. Thanks Pal. But also, no thanks to the hospital for not employing an anaesthetist in obstetrics full time.

Now, I know VGH says they can't get anyone, and that the pay they're asking for is entirely unreasonable. Yes, I understand. There is a doctor shortage, and it's partially because of that big suckhole to the south of us. But that tide could be stemmed. Easily.

1. Stop subsidizing medical training. Make it cost full price. Provide student loans to all students requesting them. If someone is wealthy enough to pay, great. Let 'em.
2. When students come out with MASSIVE debt, agree to pay it off in full if they stay in Canada for 15 years. 10 if they'll do it in a rural area.
3. If they leave, the debt is entirely theirs. Sic the student loan enforcers on them. Seriously, I think the US should have told Canada Student Loans that Osama bin Laden had outstanding debt. They'd have found him in 3 weeks.

We also have a waitlist problem for dx tests. Part of that is due to not using equipment full time, because it costs too much to pay for the labour. This can also be fixed. AND it'll appease the right a little.

1. If someone wants to jump the queue, let them. However, they have to pay for the tech to run the machine, at union wages, at off hours.
2. They also have to pay for the first person on the waitlist to have an off hours test.

And I am reminded that not having proper staff in an L&D ward is clearly a feminist issue. It is simply unacceptable for any reason not to have a full staff in the region's only L&D ward. Women suffer needlessly for hours as we wait for the anesthetist to come from another surgery. They come in tired and worn out from being on call for too many hours, from being in with long complicated surgeries, and labouring women get to wait for that. Now, I'm not saying I had bad care from mine, I didn't. He was cranky and pissed off to be called in from the lake on a beautiful Saturday, but I might have been too. Especially given how overworked he is. Hell, I apologised to him! I'd been labouring for over a day, I'd been waiting for him or someone else for my emergency c-section for 3 hours, sucking on nitrous oxide like I was trying to influence a politician because my epidural had worn off many hours earlier and the 1st anesthetist was called into someone else's surgery and away from my care. And I took one look at the new guy and apologised. Yeah.

But see, other surgeries are more important. Women get the dregs. Again.