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An open letter of thanks to all of the emergency room staff of Victoria Hospital.

Wednesday, February 3 started out as a nice day for my wife, Ella, and myself. We had gone to the Center Branch Y for a work and sauna and swim.

Ella had complained for a few days that she was having some concerns with having some urinary problems but had made an appointment to see her doctor on Thursday morning.

After supper we sat down in the family room to read the paper and watch some television . Around nine Ella told me that she was not feeling well. Sweating, dizzy along with some chest pains.

We quickly made our way to the new Victoria Hospital, Westminister Campus Emergency Hospital. The receptionist asked: “if we wanted to see a doctor?” We were met by the triage nurse who took Ella’s history and checked her vital signs. Her blood pressure was very high and she looked very pale.

The triage nurse escorted Ella to a bed and gave her chart to Jessica who was our attending nurse. A heart-monitor was quickly attached, an IV was connected. The doctor asked for an ECG and blood work to be done.

It was now around 11 p.m and we waited anxiously for the results. We were told not to look at the heart monitor screen but the beeping sounds were very hard to hide.

I have been a counsellor for may years and have studied people for my entire adult life. The EMD staff arrived with their patients on the stretchers to be met by the nursing/doctors. The patients medical concerns were shared with the staff.

There was a vast array of very ill people who needed attention. Everyone was given respect and a multiple of kind words by the nursing staff. Very old feeble men/women were called by their first names asked:” how they were doing. “Don’t worry honey/dear they were told you are in good hands and we will take good care of you.”

A young women from Latin America cried that she didn’t want to die. In her country an emergency room visit often times ended in death. Nurse, Marco, promised her that she would not die. Soon her husband and daughter arrived and the last time I saw her she was smiling.

We were told that some more blood work would be needed around four in the morning. It was a long, long night. The resident doctor told us that the ECG’s were not consistent and they wanted to keep Ella over for Thursday for echo test and if it went well a stress test.

Ella stayed in the emergency room until ten p.m Thursday when she was transferred to a semi private room to share with an elderly man. He and his dear wife had been malnourished and in need of medical care when they were admitted. His nurse, Sue, gently gave him tender loving care. She even took the time to wash and cut his hair before he had lunch with his dear wife.

The cardio team led by Dr Chow told us their findings of white cells in Ella’s urine that indicated a urinary tract infection. The next step was for Ella to take the stress step that would indicate any artery blockages. “She had the wrong bra and not the proper running shoes, she cried.

The doctors came back with a glowing report of the stress test. We were free to go home. Ella and I expressed our sincere thanks for the warmth and expert care that we had been given by all of the staff at the hospital.

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com