UMD HealthScare (written 2/5/04...finished 8/17/05)


Some people at the University of Maryland Health Center need to be slapped.  You're 18-28 years old (sometimes older), miles away from home, or maybe you are a person with health insurance only accepted at your local University clinic, or you have no health insurance at all...whatever.  Something leads you to the university health center.  Your sick, in pain, in need of comforting advice.  What do you really get?  A load full of shit.


*Note: Not everyone at my health center stay sucked.  The check in girl was totally understanding and helpful.  Dr. Margaret did the best she could and the other doctor and nurse (nurse Haynes) that saw me were very very nice.

What were you doing at the Health Center Jessica?  Well, I'll tell you.  I was walking to class, just walking, trying to avoid slipping on ice.  Well I failed, miserably at the task.  I was just stepping over a mound of snow and then BAM!  My leg slipped under me, my ankle twisted and went CRACK-POP (but not snap).  I screamed out.  Student came to my rescue (there are nice people in this world) and took me to the Health Center.  

We get there and a concerned receptionist points us to the urgent care desk.  We go there and a girl who is obviously new, but concerned tries to help us.  Her supervisor, the mean, nasty, medical assistant (see where this is going?) says "Does she have an appointment?"  I'm this not URGENT CARE?  Did you not hear my fucking story about falling on the ice just 20 minutes ago??  I didn't know I was supposed to call after I wiped out and almost went into shock (I did almost go into shock, I'm not making that up for drama purposes)?  Is this how it was supposed to go:

        Brr...Brr..."Hello, University Urgent Care."

        "Yes, I have an urgent emergency...can I make an appointment for URGENT CARE?"  I'm currently on my ass from    falling on the ice and I'm about to pass out from pain.  Think you can squeeze me in URGENT CARE?"


Back to reality...where priorities are number 1, it's 9:30 am.  Apparently, front desk is a no show at 9:30, so I'm put in a wait.  No ice, no offer to prop my leg up.  I thank the girl that dropped me off at the center and she runs off to class ( was the guy that sat with me when I nearly passed out).  I get an appointment for TEN O'CLOCK.  Meanwhile, keep in mine...the medical assistant is supposed to have a degree in medical i think cause he calls himself a medical assistant.  However, he just keeps me thrown in this chair, as I mentioned before, no ice, no elevation.  My ankle suffered in my slip.  I couldn't move it and it was swollen badly.  My time working with my podiatrist uncle taught me, the first thing you should do is RICE.  Raise, ice, elevate...something like that...correct me if I'm wrong...but I know ice and elevation were needed and I wasn't getting it!  So, I flag down a nurse and ask her for a chair to prop up my leg and a bag of ice.  She immediately goes off to tell someone I need this.  TWENTY minutes later, she walks by and sees me without either.  Upset, she finally went and got the items for me herself.

So obviously, since I'm at a clinic, I don't get in until like 20-30 minutes AFTER my scheduled time (never mind that time's a factor...).  I go into the room and the doctor comes in with a nurse (maybe two).  This is the best friend Dena is giggling her ass off obviously, because we have no idea what is wrong with my ankle, an X-ray is in order.  However, the Health Center was going through a renovation at this time.  The doctor proceeds to tell me that they LOST their X-ray machine.  They LOST THEIR X-RAY MACHINE!!???  Now again, I worked with my uncle and he has an X-ray machine in his office.  They aren't small tell me...HOW DO YOU LOSE A FUCKING X-RAY MACHINE???  So the doctor tells me all she is going to do is wrap an icepack around my ankle and I'll have to go to my uncle's or the ER for an X-ray.

        "Wow...thanks...I couldn't have possibly been able to you know wrap the ankle, I just wasted TWO HOuRS of my LIFE that I CAN'T EVER get back."

Needless to say I went home, ended up on a couch were I couldn't move from for two days...because the next day, it iced stormed and I couldn't go to my uncle's.  Top it off with the fact that Kevin was away on business.  Thank god for Karen who took me out to Uncle Charlie's that Saturday (two days later) and took me out to waited hand and foot on me.  She's awesome.  Turned out I didn't break it (thank God), but I did tear a ligament really bad...which was probably worse.  I was off the ankle for two months...did PT...el sucko...

But I still can't get over the fact that the University Health Center LOST their X-ray machine...hope they found it by now...