Emergency room medicine: 2BMJ 1995; 311 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.311.7009.881 (Published 30 September 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;311:881
- George Dunea, attending physician
- Cook County Hospital, Chicago, USA
The nurse was pleasant and anxious to help.
“I am from Thailand,” she said; “but I have a Canadian husband,” she added.
“Yes, I know Bangkok,” I replied, “I was there several years ago.”
When I suggested I was tired of waiting, she explained that they had closed nine hospitals in Montreal.
“Yet 70% of Canadians are satisfied,” she said. “Everybody is equal and all receive the same care.”
“In your public hospitals in America patients sometimes wait for 12 hours,” interjected another nurse.
Nevertheless, we were ready to give up. The trouble had started that morning when my wife's knee suddenly gave out. She developed excruciating pain and could no longer bear weight, so I …