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Cheese, Cracker, Some Assembly Required

In the back of an ambulance, somewhere in Louisiana…

Patient (at the top of her lungs): “It took them three fucking years to figure out what is wrong with me!”

AD: “Oh, my. That must have been terrible.”

Patient (eyes bulging now): “And that fucking hospital runs staff through like cattle at shift change! And nobody even listens to me!”

AD: “I’m listening to you. There’s no need to shout, I’m right here.”

Patient (spittle flying now): “I have to shout to get anybody to fucking listen to me!”

AD: “No, you don’t. When you scream and shout, people just tune you out.”

Patient (who now should have her picture in the dictionary, under “apoplexy”): “Yes I do! Yes I do! My fucking specialist wants to send me back to my GP, and my GP wants to send me to the specialist! Nobody wants to fucking deal with me!”

AD (tuning her out): “Mmmmm hmmmm…”

Nobody wants to deal with her. Color me surprised.

Comments - Add Yours

  • murgatr

    What a shocker – apparently she missed the memo stating “you get what you give”


    • Anonymous

      well, having had the unfortunate experience of being ping-ponged between docs who were unable to diagnose/get the insurance company to pay for my treatment, I can understand being driven right up the wall, then over it and through the windows on the other side, I can sympathize with her…

      • Anonymous

        Nah, Yogi, you had to experience this chick in person. She was her own worst enemy when it came to her healthcare, and well on the way to psychotic.
        Kelly Grayson

        • Anonymous

          Oh, I don’t doubt that, Kelly. It’s just that extended exposure to the tug-o-war can loosen the screws of even a (relatively) more sane indivindual. In my case, it took standing in the urgent care facility with 1/2 cup of “feculent” pus streaming down my left leg and pooling in my shoe to get the doc on duty to do something other than try to call my insurance company for the 4th time. The temptation to simply fling it at him was very hard to resist.

  • Tommy

    AD, what’s the definition of “Irony” again?

  • Paul Beglane

    Screw that- If I’m chronically ill but still need a 911 call, I’m going to be in boyscout/astronaut politeness mode, and bring cake, too, if I can. Anything to give my ass the edge on quality of care. 

  • Mel Maguire

    Well, she HAS to shout – because we all know that a paramedic who is transporting her to the hospital is the only person who can solve the problem.

  • Suecopinga

    I usually begin by saying “please don’t talk like that; I am WAY too old to listen to that kind of language.” and if that doesn’t work, and the patient is under 25, I amputate their cell phone from their fingers, promising to return it only after they calm down. Shuts them up every time. I am always surprised at the number of people who believe they will facilitate their own care by putting their caregiver on the defensive!