Wed | Mar 21, 2018

World-class care from KPH

Published:Wednesday | September 14, 2016 | 12:00 AM


Last Saturday, after experiencing severe pain, I bit the bullet and made my way to the nearest health facility, the Kingston Public Hospital (KPH).

On my way there, I remembered the reports that Friday and Saturday nights were the worst day at these public-health facilities, as these were the days they saw the most accident victims, crime victims and generally persons who might be much more in need of emergency medical attention than I.

Prepared for a long wait, I still made my way to the hospital hoping that they would just tell me that I was not about to die and I could go home and see my personal doctor the next day.

Getting to KPH was a breeze and my trip started on a bright note when a courteous and pleasant customer service officer took my information in the Accident and Emergency Department and sent me to wait to see the triage nurse.

The wait was not long, and an equally pleasant face greeted me as she efficiently took my vital signs and listened to my complaints. Her smile and calming tone assured me, although I did detect some concern in her eyes as she ushered me to the doctor.

My evening just kept getting better, as the doctor, who seemed to be moving from patient to patient effortlessly, was informed of my symptoms, checked my vital signs, and ordered immediate injections and X-rays.

Now I'm notoriously afraid of injections, so you could smell the fear as I was escorted to the injection room where a smiling nurse convinced me that it would not be painful and charmed me to the point that I forgot to bawl out until she was done. She lied, though; it was still hot, but I forgive her.

The X-ray technician was equally courteous, going as far as to check with the doctor if he wanted an X-ray of another area of my body that was not indicated on the original order.

With that done, it was back to the doctor, who slowly and patiently explained what was wrong, what portion of my pain was caused by my bad habits, and what was a natural occurrence linked to ageing and what was the treatment 'we' would embark on to make things better.

At the end of the evening, the pain had diminished, though not gone completely, but I left KPH with a bounce in my stride, confident that I had received top-level medical treatment from a team that was under pressure dealing with the constant stream of patients but doing it with a professionalism and courtesy that was more than impressive.

I want to say a big thank you to all the doctors, nurses, customer care representatives, porters and even the security guards who refused to let me break the rules and use the shortest route out of the hospital.

I hope I'm not back there as a patient anytime soon, but if I am, I hope the Government provides the resources they will need because at KPH, Jamaica has a First-World team that can deliver First-World health care if they are given half a chance.


St Andrew