Sunday, May 18, 2014

Ya Can't Make This Stuff Up

Our family has had its share of incidents with doctors and hospitals making careless mistakes, but has prevailed through it all.  Recently, my sister had food poisoning and was admitted to St. Peters Hospital.  Unlike some experiences in the past, her care was exemplary.  It was only after she arrived home that the fun began.  Here's the story in her own words.

On April 25th I was unfortunate enough to find myself on the receiving end of Campylobacter food poisoning.  On the 29th I was admitted to the hospital dehydrated and six pounds lighter.  Because they did not know yet if what I had was contagious, I was put in isolation on the Oncology floor of St. Peter's Hospital.  First, let me say that the care was wonderful and every single nurse, doctor, aide and worker that entered my room was attentive, friendly, and knowledgeable. They even asked what was the one thing that was important to me.  I wanted to know that the call bell would be answered promptly and it WAS every single time. 

Once they knew what was causing my distress, a course of antibiotics was prescribed and I was sent home two days later to finish recuperating at home. I received a call from the nurses  to check on my progress and finally after two weeks I think I have turned the corner to normalcy. 

Fast Forward to May 16th and the mail delivery.  In the mailbox was a card with a return address from St. Peters.  "How nice I thought" and quickly opened the card.  The cover read, "In Deepest Sympathy." On the inside," Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this most difficult time," and it was signed from the Nurses on the Oncology Floor of St. Peters.  

After doing a quick once over to convince myself that I did make it through this ordeal and with good humor,  I called to speak to the nurse in charge.  They answered promptly once again and I identified myself as a former patient who was still alive and kicking but wondering why I had been sent a sympathy card.  The response was , "OH NO not you too! I just got off the phone with someone else.  We always send cards to patients who are discharged. My secretary was out sick and a volunteer sent the wrong card to everyone who  was discharged."  After many sincere apologies, I was told that I was going to receive something the next day.

Saturday:  I pulled into my driveway to see a delivery person with a beautiful fruit basket.  I tipped the young man and lugged the massive basket into the house.  Attached was a card that read, "Sorry We Sent You The Wrong Card, Hope Your Feeling Better And On The Road To Recovery" From Avril and the Entire Staff at St. Peter's University Hospital. (Spelling error compliments of the Flower store-sorry the teacher in me).  Again, I thought," How nice!" 

Then I looked at the name and address.  I am assuming that someone else in Monroe Township is holding a sympathy card sent for getting well AND a beautiful fruit basket with my name and address, because this one had someone else's name  and address.  

NOW I called the Flower Store and spoke with someone there.  I as quickly as I could recounted the entire sympathy card incident and told him that I believed some other nice, perhaps elderly person (the address was for one of our adult communities) was probably wondering why he/she was in possession of a fruit basket with my name on it. After, he stopped laughing, the person on the other end, said, "Boy this just doesn't end for you does it?" He did a quick search and confirmed that, yes indeed we both got the same basket and apology note.  He apologized and thanked me for my good humor and promised to call the other person whose name also started with a V like mine. 

And so here I sit, alive and well with a story to tell!  Ya can't make this stuff up!