There we go again!
Roberta made her rounds in the evening two days ago. I yelled at her to bring her cane, and she came to the living room, where she laughed and talked to cats, then proceeded to go back to her room.
Boom! Suddenly she was falling! Her head bounced off of the arm chair, and she rolled to her back at my feet.
Fortunately, this time she didn't seem to split her head open, but her shoulder and neck hurt a lot.
I didn't want to go to the ER, so I watched her carefully for the signs of a concussion: the nausea, the dizziness. There were none. The next day, though, her shoulder still hurt significantly, so, whether I wanted to or not, we had to go to the ER.
The triage nurse checked Roberta out. She asked her, how she hurt her shoulder and recorded that she had a fall. I mentioned a few times that, when she turned her head, my charge's neck also hurt. Then we were told to wait in the waiting room.
In a while someone came to take Roberta to do the x-ray. Things were progressing much faster, than they usually do at the ER!
A nurse came out to tell us, Roberta didn't have a fracture in her shoulder. They took her and me and placed us on a gurney in the ER's hallway under a sign: "Fast Track". That was hopeful! The nurse said then, they were just going to give Roberta some pain killers and discharge her.
In about an hour the doctor sauntered up. He questioned me again about the circumstances of Roberta's injury and declared, he didn't know, she fell down, Suddenly the nurse was there with a cervical collar, which they placed on Roberta, and told us, she had to have a cat scan of most of her body!
At that point I realized, the sign lied! We were on the fast track to no-where!
While Roberta was getting scanned, I gave up and went to get some food. When I came back, she was already lying on the gurney, her cervical collar making her miserable. I fed her a candy bar with some water, and we waited.
Five hours passed from the moment when we entered the "fast track" of the ER hell to the point, when they finally admitted, Roberta just had a miner sprain! I told Roberta, in twenty minutes or so we were leaving, no matter what, when the male nurse came over, waving her discharge orders.
We make the medical profession into something noble when, in fact, it is extremely fallible! There is this impregnable wall of false niceness and trustworthiness around them, that is very hard to challenge. How could the doctor treat Roberta without first checking the triage's report on her? Or did the triage nurse even record, what we told her?
Anyway, we are back at the house. Roberta is feeling much better, and I am even more sure, there are difficult times up ahead!