Tuesday, December 06, 2005

I *heart* socialized health care and the only good thing Mike Harris ever did

So last night, I'm sitting at my computer playing Sudoku (aka Japanese crack) and all of a sudden my eye starts bothering me. It felt like I had something in my eye. I checked it in the mirror and then had the BF look, then he tried to flush it out with his contact solution. Nothing worked and my eye just got more and more uncomfortable until it started to look like my actual eyeball was swelling, when I notice that the ring around the iris of my right eye had disappeared, I started to get worried. So I called Telehealth Ontario (Mike Harris' only good idea, ever, it's a hotline where you can call and talk to a registered nurse to help you figure out if your problem is serious enough to go to the doctor, or if you can treat it at home) and while I was talking to them it got to the point where the layer that was covering my eyeball was crinkling up when I tried to turn my eye to the side. They told me to go to the ER. The BF had to go to bed for work in the morning, so I called a patient, dependable, lovely friend. She's always good for some fun even in the worst situations, she and I laughed our asses off the whole time we were in Bangladesh together. We met up at the ER, there was this incredibly irritating guy who kept faking seisures and talking loudly about his childhood, he had track marks all over his arms and kept trying to kill imaginary bugs on the floor and claiming that his track marks were bug bites from the bugs in the hospital. And he kept gagging, couldn't sit still, he was up down and back and forth and kept trying to talk to everyone in the waiting room. Being miserable with my eye-popping out of my head, and having this crazy bastard pissing me off, the guy was lucky he didn't try to talk to me. Despite being obviously nuts, I think he had enough of a sense of self-preservation to leave me alone. Anyway, once my partner in crime arrived the situation seemed much more amusing.
Anyway, once I finally got to see the doctor he looked at me for a total of about 15 seconds, and tried to give me a prescription without telling me what was wrong with me. Anyway, apparently it was an alergic reaction to something that caused the white of my eye to swell and bulge. He gave me a prescription for some drops I have to take for 5 to 7 days.
At the moment, it's still painful and unsightly, but less swollen than last night. The upside is that the whole thing only cost me four dollars and seventy-one cents for the eye drops. And there were some pretty good sales on at the all night drug store when I went to pick up my prescription.
Seriously, that an unemployed bum like me can just pop down to the emergency room and get my weird eye problems sorted out without giving a second thought to the price is a pretty special thing. It's pretty easy to take for granted, but every time I see Stephen Harper's ferretty face on the TV set, I think about what it would be like if we had to rely on money -grubbing capitalists for the provision of something as key as health care. If that had been the case, I'd have woken up bankrupt or blind in one eye this morning.


sly said...

brilliant post! and very important: public health care matters. and if social services were taken seriously, your track-marked "friend" would have another place to be instead of the ER.

everyone vote NDP! they are the only national party that won't steal your tax dollars or public health care!

and I'm sorry to read about your eye. scary! is it feeling better?

Miss Ash said...

I agree with both you and Sly it is very important and i'd like to thank you miss Jennifer for getting me interested in these sorts of things :)
As well even though i was not there i am dubbing the track marked faker your TYB :)

Jennifer said...

Hey guys, the eye is slowly improving, it hurts less today.

Princess Pessimism said...

Another good thing (UGH...I JUST sliced my finger open on nothing, and am bleeding onto my sweater!!! I shall deal with my injury after my comment, which I feel is an important point)

Mike Harris ALSO did one other good thing. He implemented the ProKids program that I worked at for 3 wonderful years, that enabled families on OW to provide programming to their children through an alloted amount of money per child per family. As I have also come to know, this PK program has ALSO put aside 1000$ towards the childs future education as a sort of scholarship, but not really.

As devilish as harris was, he did have SOME good ideas.

jane said...

Glad your eye is feeling better, and I'm going to forward your post to some of my yankee friends so they can eat their hearts out!

Jennifer said...

Oh Jane, don't forget to tell them that I was in and out of the ER in about 2 hours. And that I've also already been to my own (lovely) doctor this week to get her to look at my knee, the weather has been making it ache a bit, so I got a referal to a specialist. And, I have an appointment for a check up next week. Oh the medical decadence!

You should also tell them that I think it's a shame that we can't have free visits to the eye doctor and dentist, or socialized pharmacare, but I'm still hoping. If we have to dig up Tommy Douglas himself to make it happen, I think it would be worth it.

I was in Michigan a while ago and I saw ads for the Mercy Hospital ER, "You'll be seen in under 20 minutes or get a free gift!" Partly it reminded me of a pizza delivery service, and partly it reminded me of the billboards I saw for MRI clinics in Bangladesh, I'm not sure what the stupid tagline was because I can't read Bengali, but neither could most of the people who walked past the sign every day either, so I guess it doesn't really matter.

Hey, does anyone else but me remember that add for Buffalo MRI. "Rely on Buffalo MRI, we make MRI easy for you"! It always makes me giggle.

jane said...

On second thought, Jennifer, I might not forward all this on to them -- it might make them even more depressed.

Jennifer said...

Jane, why are you trying to dely the revolution?