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Throwing Out Terminology

, , , , | Healthy | December 12, 2021

I am working at the entrance of a hospital. My coworkers are sitting near our cart with supplies, and since there isn’t enough room, I’m sitting at a table just across the entryway from them. A patient comes down from a unit in rough shape, walking slowly, kind of hunched over and carrying a catheter bag. 

After being there for a few minutes:

Patient: “Do you guys have a [mumble] bag?”

Coworkers: “A what bag?”

Patient: “An emesis bag.”

My coworkers are silent.

Me: *Blurting out* “Like to throw up!”

They moved pretty quickly after that.

They quickly grabbed her a bag from the cart, and then she staggered outside. 

People who work in my position have a variety of backgrounds and don’t have to have training in medical terminology, especially since we do not provide any kind of patient care. I do have training in terminology, and I’m thankful I remembered what it meant! I’m also surprised the patient used the correct terminology! Hopefully, the patient recovers soon!

One Form Fits All

, , , | Healthy | November 23, 2021

I just gave birth, twelve hours ago, to a perfect baby girl. Unfortunately, somewhere along the way, between walking and position changes, I managed to twist my knee. I didn’t care at the time; I just wanted to hold my daughter and sleep.

When I wake up in the morning, it’s swollen and painful, so they make arrangements for an X-ray and MRI.

The technician meets me with a wheelchair in my room, where my daughter is sleeping in her bassinet next to my bed. They confirm my name and date of birth and scan my bracelet.

Technician: “Is there any chance you could be pregnant?”

I point at my daughter and laugh.

Me: “Absolutely NONE!”

Literally Life-Threatening Levels Of Stupidity

, , , | Healthy | November 15, 2021

I work at a hospital switchboard. An emergency services dispatcher has put a caller through who is looking for a patient and insists that they are with us. We have just established that they are not at our hospital.

Me: “I’m sorry, he’s not at this hospital. You need to call back the dispatcher to find out.”

Client: “What’s their number?”

Me: “9-1—”

Client: “Wait! Wait! Let me get a pen. Okay, go.”

Me: “9-1-1.”

Client: “9… 1… 1… Okay. So, do I put my area code in front of that?”

This Hetero Seems Upsetero

, , , , , , , | Friendly | November 8, 2021

I regularly have to go to hospital for eye checks, and my husband usually comes with me. On one of the appointments, I had to fill in a standard diversity form. I went in for my appointment, and my husband stayed in the waiting room, where he overheard an old lady and her daughter discussing the form. The daughter was reading the form out to the old lady and filling it in depending on the old lady’s answers.

He told me afterward that one answer caught his attention.

Daughter: “What sexual orientation do you identify as, Mother?”

Old Lady: “Er… What are the options?”

Daughter: “You’re heterosexual, aren’t you?”

Old Lady: *Indignant* “No, I am not! I like MEN!”

One Door Opens… And Never Closes

, , , , , | Right | November 8, 2021

My wife goes into labor a couple of days before the official due date. I call ahead to the maternity ward, and they have everything ready when we arrive a short time later. My wife and I are ushered into delivery and she is hooked up to the monitors. It’s now just a waiting game.

Not knowing how long this will take, I excuse myself to use the restroom. The rules state that in the delivery wing, restrooms are reserved for mothers-to-be, so I go across to the recovery ward.

As I go to exit the single-person bathroom, I turn the knob, the little button push-lock pops out, and… nothing. The doorknob turns freely in my hand but the locking mechanism remains stuck. I jiggle, re-lock, and unlock again, and try things over and over, but the door won’t open.

Outside, a voice asks if I need help.

Me: “Yes, please. I seem to be locked in the bathroom.

Nurse #1: “I’m a nurse. I’ll call maintenance. Who are you visiting in the recovery ward, so I can let them know?”

Me: “Actually, my wife is over in delivery, ready to give birth.”

Nurse #1: “Oh! Oh, my! You’re going to miss the birth of your child! [Nurse #2], [Nurse #3], quick! Tell maintenance it’s an emergency!”

This draws every nurse on the ward.

Nurse #2: “What should we do?”

Nurse #3: “Should we call the fire department?”

Me: “No! Please don’t do that! That would be a disturbance for everyone. I’m sure maintenance can figure it out.”

Maintenance did arrive. There was no way to disassemble the lock from the outside, the door hinges were on the inside with no way to pass me a tool, and there was no window to escape. Eventually, two maintenance workers used crowbars to pry off the doorframe and remove the door completely.

I sheepishly left the scene of destruction under the gaze of several families who had come to visit their newborns and went back in time to see my son being born.

Things went well, and of course, we were moved to recovery after his birth. For the next twenty-four hours, with each shift change of doctors and nurses, the story of why the door of the bathroom was leaning against the wall just spread. Our OB-GYN arrived the next day, fully briefed on what had happened, and constantly teased me about it. My wife found it hilarious.

The story continues. As our town was building a new hospital at the time, large maintenance work in the old hospital, such as replacing broken doors, was not a priority.

We returned several times over the next few months for wellness checks and breastfeeding advice. The door was never fixed, and everyone knew it was me. I thought I would never live it down until the new hospital was finished and the old one was torn down almost a year later.