5 Days in a German Hospital – the Ultimate Culture Shock
March was a bit of a blur.
I’ve mentioned a couple times here that I have a disease called ulcerative colitis. It’s an intestinal disease that I have to take medicine for each day for the rest of my life. It usually doesn’t bother me, but occasionally problems come up. I won’t get into too much detail, but it affects my large intestines, so I’m sure you can use your imagination. Or, you know, don’t.
To make a long story a bit shorter, I started feeling sick towards the end of February, and what initially seemed minor quickly took a turn for the worse. My doctor decided to run some tests, and since he didn’t like what he saw, he admitted me into the hospital on March 14th.
I’ve never had more than an outpatient procedure at a hospital before, so I can’t really compare a hospital stay in Germany to one in the US, but I imagine they’re never fun experiences. I ended up spending five nights there, and while I was incredibly miserable, I did my best to laugh at some of the things I thought were ridiculous.
The roadside attraction no one wants to see
Once it was agreed that I would be checked into the hospital, a couple of nurses wheeled my bed down the hall. After a minute or two, they pulled me over into a little nook in the hallway. Kind of like pulling over onto one of those scenic outlooks on the side of the highway.
There a doctor was waiting to do an EKG. She lifted up my shirt, stuck little suction cup type things to me, and checked out my heart. Again, I’ve never had a hospital stay, but I can’t imagine in the US they would ever have me on the side of a hallway, boobs exposed to anyone passing by, to do an EKG. At least it was quick and efficient, and I was still a little drugged up.
The worst way to be woken up
I spent my first two nights sharing a room with a woman who was at least in her 80s. I’m not sure exactly what was wrong with her, but she couldn’t walk. Unfortunately this also meant she needed assistance to go to the bathroom. I never saw bedpans at this hospital, so when she needed to take care of business, she rang the nurse call button and someone came to help her into what was basically a wheelchair with a bucket attached to the seat. And there she went, 10 feet away from me, all hours of the day and night.
As much as I felt bad for the woman, being woken up at 4am to the sound of someone crapping in a bucket 10 feet away from me was not ideal for my own rest and recovery. Especially when the nurse walked away in the middle of it, failed to return in a timely fashion, resulting in me having to hit the call button again for the poor woman. Luckily they were able to move me to another room after two nights.
My remaining three nights were spent with a woman about my age who had recently been diagnosed with diabetes, so in general she was fine, but they were trying to get her blood sugar levels under control. However, sleep was still not something either of us was really destined for. Everyone’s medication is on a set schedule, so one of my roommate’s insulin appointments was at 2am, and my IV medications started at 6am. Plus the night nurse those three nights was really loud and seemed to think it was perfectly reasonable to turn on all the lights and attempt full conversations with us when she came in and woke us up.
How does a hospital not understand dietary restrictions?
Food was another odd thing to deal with. I didn’t expect gourmet cuisine at a hospital, but I did expect them to read the form we filled out listing dietary restrictions. I don’t have any food allergies, but when my colitis is acting up I reduce or eliminate things from my diet that could make it worse. Dairy, fatty foods, excessive fiber and vegetables are all things my digestive system doesn’t need to be processing when I’m having severe intestinal issues.
Despite my requests, my breakfast four out of five days was a hard roll (my doctor took one look and said “please don’t eat that”) along with a slice of cheese, a cup of coffee, and a slice of wheat bread. Each time I sent it back requesting just some sliced white bread and a little butter.
Lunch and dinner was even more complicated. One night my dinner included a pile of raw tomatoes, celery, a mystery vegetable that seemed similar to celery, apple sauce and lactose-free cream cheese. Another night it was three slices of lunch-meat-style turkey (one of which had little bits of broccoli in it) and a hard boiled egg. Lunch one day was a veggie bake, so onions, carrots and who knows what else covered in cheese and baked in the oven so it sort of looked like lasagna. I muddled my way through the lunches, but usually had Andy bring me food for dinner.
Because I was on so many different medications, I had one of those IV things in my arm for easy all hours access to my veins. In the process of moving me from my first to my second room, a little of the IV fluid leaked onto the bandages holding the IV port in place. I asked a nurse if I could get new gauze, and she decided the IV itself needed to be replaced. Instead of waiting for the doctor to look at it and decide for himself, she took it out.
At this point my arms were rebelling from being poked at for IVs and blood samples, and he had to resort to the top of my hand. He warned me that if that one had to be replaced, he would have to try my neck next. Thanks for freaking me out. At least I ended up with this lovely mesh half glove and got to spend three days feeling like Madonna.
I say hospital, you say Krankenhaus
To top things off, this whole time I was dealing with a major language barrier. The doctors I dealt with all spoke English well enough that I felt reasonably comfortable, but it’s still a strange thing dealing with your health and wondering if anything is getting lost in translation. The nurses were hit or miss. Some spoke great English, some none at all. So I very often had to attempt German. I’m very glad I’ve passed my German integration course, but that does not make me fluent by any standards. It was very stressful to try to decipher instructions or ask questions in German, and it made the whole experience even harder to deal with.
After being released on March 19th, doctor’s instructions have been “sit on the couch, relax” and I’ve been doing just that for the past few weeks. Just in the past few days, I’m slowly starting to feel better. I have been so lacking in energy and strength that even taking a shower could reduce me to tears, so I certainly didn’t have the mental capacity for blogging. But I’ve turned a corner, and I’m enjoying jumping back into writing.
Now back to the regular posting schedule for Ali’s Adventures. My post about our travel announcements will be up on Thursday, so be sure to check back for that. I’m really excited to share with you what’s coming up next!
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April 2, 2013 @ 10:19 AM
I so know how you must have felt during these past few weeks Ali.
Last year I had a gastroscopy done in which they poke a tube down your neck and peer into your stomach and take a look around. It was in preparation for gastric surgery that I later decided not to have. Anyway because I live 200km away from the hospital in question, live on my own and have to take public transport to and from Melbourne where the hospital was located, what would normally had been a day procedure necessitated an overnight stay in what they told me over the phone before hand was a “medi hotel”. It turns out that their so called “medi hotel” was just a bed in a ward. My overnight stay also involved bright lights and people waking me up in the middle of the night also. The food was so horrendous for breakfast that I refused to eat it instead having McDonald’s on the way back into central Melbourne, probably against doctor’s if not dietitians orders but compared to hospital food, McDonald’s is gourmet. Oh and the faeces on the floor of what they called a shower meant that I had to shower when I got back home but never mind that.
On top of that though, if that was not enough, I caught a serious infection whilst I was at the hospital whereby I had a massive fever on and off for a week or so. I also developed a massive bulge under my right armpit which freaked me out and sent me to the doctor thinking that I had lymphoma. My doctor assured me that it was just a fever albeit a really bad one and he wanted to send me back to hospital again to have an antibiotic drip put into my arm which would have kept me there for several days. This had happened less than 30 days after coming out of hospital and I’ve never had such a serious infection before or since so it could only have come from there.
I managed to bargain with my GP and talk him into giving me the highest possible strength of oral antibiotics on the proviso that if I had a fever whilst I was on them I’d go into hospital like he had originally requested. Luckily, the antibiotics worked a treat and the bulge burst through the skin meaning that all the infected material drained out of my body leaving a massive cavity but no re-infection (thank God).
So that was my horror experience at Box Hill Hospital in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs, probably one of the worst public hospitals you could go to in our region bar a country hospital where I found out online through a government website, they don’t always wash their hands.
On the flipside though I did have a much better experience back on New Years Day 2005 when I flew into Melbourne and had my one and only seizure at Melbourne Airport. If you’re going to have a seizure have it at an airport because they always have an ambulance on standby there. Anyways, it was a really serious seizure and for a moment I was seriously weak and struggling to breath so they rushed me to a hospital in Melbourne’s northern suburbs called the Northern Hospital. They were a lot better there and more understanding and after keeping me overnight discharged me in the morning with directions as to how to get back home.
I guess my takeway is that hospitals the world over are a mixed bag. But after the infection I caught at the Box Hill Hospital that time, I fear going back into hospital for any procedures lest they do some really serious damaged to me. My doctor wants me to have a colonoscopy done due to some hemaeroid issues that have been going on for a year but since I found out that the same results can be achieved using an MRI machine, I’ve refused to get it done unless they find something using an MRI first. I will probably have to pay for the MRI but I’d rather that than another infection.
As for the lack of strength and weakness you’ve been feeling, I get that on and off with my Fibromyalgia and Osteoarthritis that I have. I usually get it in the knees but I also get it from time to time through the whole body.
I sincerely hope that you don’t have to go into hospital again anytime soon or if you have to go, that it’s at least a private hospital.
April 2, 2013 @ 2:31 PM
Matthew, your experiences sound horrific! Dealing with hospitals and illnesses is never fun, but it sounds like you’ve had a particularly bad string of luck dealing with yours. I’m starting to feel better but definitely still weak. Taking a shower or walking up the stairs is enough to wear me out. But hopefully over the next few weeks I’ll slowly start getting back to normal and my muscles will remember how they’re supposed to work. Thanks for the well wishes!
April 2, 2013 @ 10:20 AM
OMG Ali! You know I completely empathize with you and I’m so terribly sorry that it got so bad to have to be admitted. I can say that your hospital experience was just what I have experienced in Canada – except the food. Oh we have TERRIBLE food but restrictive diets are enforced so I would be served strained beef broth (yes, the broth itself was even strained!), jello and clear tea or juice. The idea is to let the bowel rest. OH and the energy drain!! It is incomprehensible to those who haven’t experienced it, isn’t it? Take it easy, my friend. Rest, rest, and more rest. Good food, plenty of fluids, and just take your time. I know it’s not easy but you need to take care of YOU ahead of anything else. Take care.
April 2, 2013 @ 2:34 PM
Thanks Gillian, I figured you’d be able to relate! The energy drain is ridiculous. I can’t believe how worn out I get from the tiniest thing like taking a shower or walking up a flight of stairs. At least I’m getting my mental energy back, so hopefully my body will follow soon. Definitely still resting as much as possible!
April 2, 2013 @ 3:59 PM
Glad you’re feeling better, dear!
April 3, 2013 @ 11:23 AM
April 2, 2013 @ 4:04 PM
Ali, I’m so sorry you’ve been feeling so poorly for so long! I have a couple of GI tract issues and while I’m not sure how yours feels, I can sympathize with the problems in general.
I’m sure it was hard to recuperate with so little sleep, not enough of the right type of food, and uncertainty about what was going on. Keep resting and taking care of yourself! I’m sure Andy’s taking good care of you too.
April 3, 2013 @ 11:25 AM
Thanks Heather! I don’t do well when I’m low on sleep normally, so being sick, sharing a room with a stranger, and being woken up at all hours of the night did NOT make for a happy Ali. I’m convinced the only reason they discharged me when they did was because I was having a sleep-deprived meltdown and cried my way out a day or 2 early! Yes, Andy is taking great care of me, but luckily I’m starting to feel better again.
April 2, 2013 @ 4:10 PM
Oh Ali! I was wondering why I hadn’t seen any posts via email lately! I’m glad to hear you’re on the mend! Hopefully you’ve been able to rest more at home!
Hospitals are the last place to get rest, especially when you really need it! I was in the hospital for 5 days after little man was born, recovering from my c-section. People were constantly in and out of my room, it drove me to tears the second day because I was just so exhausted. Luckily, I didn’t have another patient room mate (and everyone spoke English)!
Looking forward to more posts soon!
April 3, 2013 @ 11:28 AM
Thanks Amy! In theory I can understand why they need to come in and give medications or check up on you or whatever, but sleep is so important to healing and recovery. The night nurse who kept waking us up just didn’t understand why I was so distraught about the sleep situation. But I’m feeling soooo much better now and hopefully it’ll just be a few more weeks before I feel completely like myself again. And yes, more posts coming!
April 2, 2013 @ 5:13 PM
I thought you had been quiet. I am glad that you are feeling better and that your strength will pick up. Missed reading your posts.
April 3, 2013 @ 11:29 AM
Thanks Steve! Nice to know I was missed! It feels good to be back to blogging, so there will be more posts soon.
April 2, 2013 @ 5:37 PM
So sorry to hear about that! Hope you are feeling better soon. Have you always had this or were you just diagnosed? Not a fun cultural or medical experience. Get well soon and look forward to things returning to normal.
April 3, 2013 @ 11:32 AM
Thanks Jeremy! I was diagnosed with colitis when I was 18, so it’s not a new issue. I’ve had a few problems over the years, but nothing like this round. Luckily my condition is pretty easily controlled with medication that I’ve been taking since I was diagnosed, so it’s mostly just a matter of taking good care of myself. I’m definitely feeling better, so hopefully I’ll have more energy back soon.
April 2, 2013 @ 8:53 PM
So sorry to hear that you’ve been sick. No one likes a hospital but it’s even scarier when you’re in another country and there’s language barriers. I really missed the curtains that they have between beds in N. American hospitals – not exactly private, but definitely more private. Hope you’re feeling better soon.
April 3, 2013 @ 11:35 AM
Thanks Laurel! Yes, the lack of a curtain was weird! If they were examining my roommate, Andy couldn’t come in to visit me, which makes sense, but they had no problem with me being there. And they would just discuss my roommate’s personal health matters with me sitting right there like it was no big deal. All strange. The language barrier was stressful, though I’m sure in some twisted way it was good practice. I’m on my way to feeling better now, so that’s good.
Kelly Rock Lakia
April 2, 2013 @ 8:54 PM
Hospital stays in foreign countries are way worse than in the US. I had my appendix taken out in St. Kitts in the West Indies. Thankfully, I went into the emergency room on doctor orders, otherwise I could have been there for hours. I also had my friends with me who monitored a lot of things, like making sure my IV catheter was hooked up properly or at least had a cap on it to prevent bleeding out – which we heard stories about. The surgery went great, recovery was another story. Right after the surgery, the nurse expected me to move myself from the transport bed to the recovery bed. When I didn’t move fast enough for her, she yanked on my right arm nearly dislocating it! At 5am, one of the mental patients wanders the hall shouting bible verses. I had my own room and my friends brought food, a pillow and towels. I was not permitted to keep the pillow and they didn’t supply one to me!?! In the two days that I stayed at the hospital, I took very short walks by myself. Meals from the hospital consisted of some hot water beverage and bread. When it was time to leave, I was not brought a wheel chair. I had to walk from the back of the hospital to the front with a stop at the pharmacy for my drugs. The pharmacist was quite displeased that I was walking and made sure my friends pulled the car right up to the front of the building. Fortunately I healed well in spite of all my fun!
Rest up and I’m glad you are doing better!
April 3, 2013 @ 11:47 AM
Kelly, that sounds horrible!! I can’t believe they expected you to move yourself from one bed to the other immediately after your surgery! No pillow?! No wheelchair out?! Yikes! I’m so glad you made it through all of that in one piece and recovered from the surgery. Thanks for sharing your story!
April 2, 2013 @ 9:27 PM
I’m so sorry – that’s no fun at all!
I also had a (much less major) run-in with the German healthcare system, wherein I spent a day attempting to get birth control and nobody could understand me and they kept sending me back and forth between buildings. You’re so right that even when someone speaks English, it’s stressful wondering what is getting lost in translation.
I also had a similar moment in Belgium at the doctor. They don’t really do hospital gowns there, so you just end up sitting naked on the table chatting with the doctor. It’s strange for an American used to a little body privacy.
April 3, 2013 @ 11:54 AM
The naked thing is weird. You’re right, as Americans we’re just used to more privacy even if it’s just an illusion to make us feel better. Even in my drugged up state, I was still thrown off by the EKG in the hallway situation. I can’t imagine sitting in a doctor’s office naked on the table just chatting with the doctor. It’s awkward enough in those paper gowns you get in the US!
April 2, 2013 @ 10:02 PM
You poor thing. I hope you are better soon. You are lucky you didn’t end up in a British hospital. They are THE worst I can tell you and you won’t share a room with one person, but with 10 in a ward!!!
April 3, 2013 @ 11:55 AM
10 people in a ward sounds horrible! I’ll do my best to stay away from those hospitals! I am starting to feel better, so hopefully I’ll be back to my normal self in the next few weeks. Thanks Tammy!
April 2, 2013 @ 11:13 PM
Oh no! That’s terrible. Hope you can get back to yourself soon.
I had to be hospitalized in Greece in 1999, and their hospitals weren’t exactly up to American or Western standards.
April 3, 2013 @ 12:02 PM
Thanks Erik! I’m on the mend, doing much better than a few weeks ago. Looking forward to seeing you here in Freiburg in a few weeks!
April 2, 2013 @ 11:45 PM
Oh wow, sounds like a … fun … experience. I’m glad it wasn’t any worse, and that you’re on the mend again!
April 3, 2013 @ 12:03 PM
Thanks Lindsey! You’re right, it could’ve been worse! Luckily I’m doing a lot better now.
April 3, 2013 @ 2:26 AM
Glad to hear you’re on the mend! Tim once broke his jaw in 4 places and had emergency surgery in the Italian hospital. He had to have his mouth wired shut and was admitted for a few days. Try a language barrier where not a single doctor or use speaks English and you can’t speak at all! I felt so bad for him. The food was all liquids, so I have no idea how Italian hospital food compares.
April 3, 2013 @ 12:05 PM
Ugh that sounds horrible! I was definitely lucky that Germans, especially German doctors, usually speak at least minimal English. I’m sure being on a liquid diet due to having your jaw wired shut is not fun! I’m glad Tim made it through ok!
fotoeins | Henry
April 3, 2013 @ 7:20 AM
Wow. I’m glad you’re all right, even though your Krankenhaus experiences were less than optimal. :-/ On the flip-side, I’ve caught up on your and Andy’s blog, and I’m pleased as punch that things have worked out for the both of you! 🙂
April 3, 2013 @ 12:07 PM
Thanks Henry! It wasn’t a fun experience, but I’m glad to be feeling better and on my way back to normal. I haven’t read anyone’s blog in forever, so you’ve got me beat there!
April 3, 2013 @ 12:16 PM
Oh honey, I’m so sorry. I hope you’re feeling better now and getting stronger every day. We’re thinking of you and sending healing vibes. XO
April 4, 2013 @ 10:59 AM
Thanks Kim! I am feeling better, and hopefully it’ll just be a little longer before I feel 100% again. Thanks for the vibes!
April 3, 2013 @ 2:40 PM
Ack! What an experience. Glad to hear you are on the mend – keep taking care of yourself!
April 4, 2013 @ 10:59 AM
Thanks Dalene! I’m getting there!
April 3, 2013 @ 2:58 PM
I’m glad you’re feeling better, and your future plans sound exciting. Take care and enjoy the weather we are experiencing here in Freiburg. It is 10 degrees right now! I think spring has sprung.
April 4, 2013 @ 11:01 AM
Thanks Teresa! I’m definitely enjoying the sunshine these days, although I’d still like it to be warmer. I’m not a cold weather person!
April 3, 2013 @ 3:10 PM
Glad to read you’re doing better.
Hope you’re back to 100% very soon and that you’ll stay that way for a long time now!
April 4, 2013 @ 11:02 AM
Thanks Sofie! I’m feeling a little better every day, so hopefully it won’t be too much longer!
April 3, 2013 @ 4:03 PM
Glad you’re on the mend, but that sounds horrendous. I think it would be at least nearly that bad anywhere, though. I stayed with my mom in her hospital room after she had a surgery and we were woken up in the same manner every 2-3 hours to check her meds, fluids, and empty these little bags that were collecting fluid. Same thing–the nurses would flip the lights on and start talking to us like it WASN’T 3am and we had just been sound asleep (as much as you can be in a hospital bed).
Hope that doesn’t happen again! Take care.
April 4, 2013 @ 11:04 AM
Thanks Carmel! Everyone seems to be telling me hospitals just aren’t places to get sleep, so it sounds pretty typical. I understand it, but it’s such a shame since the body needs sleep to heal. And yes, let’s hope I don’t end up that sick again!
April 3, 2013 @ 4:45 PM
So sorry to hear this Ali! Glad you are feeling better. My scariest visit to the hospital was taking my mom to one in Italy- worse than ones I’ve been to in third world countries. There was a dog in the ER, the nurses didn’t wear gloves to give my mom an injection, and there was a man practically dying in the ER and people kept walking right by him. As much as we like to complain about our healthcare system in the US (myself included) it is far superior to some of the European ones it seems!
April 4, 2013 @ 11:08 AM
Wow that’s crazy! From a medical standpoint, the hospital I was in seemed pretty good and they certainly took good care of me. But the sleep and food situations were awful. I guess if I had to get sick anywhere, Germany was a pretty good place for it. Thanks Laura!
April 3, 2013 @ 5:54 PM
Wow Ali – I had no idea you were in hospital! So glad to hear you are home and getting better…I’ve been dealing with health issues here in Norway since January and it’s super scary, espcially dealing with language issues. The public health system here is shocking (well, my experience of it anyway) and I finally saw a private specialist today. I’ve been on wrong medication and feeling like crap. I am sure Norwegian hospitals are not much better so I really hope that I don’t end up in one! Happy to hear you are taking it easy now at home…
April 4, 2013 @ 11:14 AM
Thanks Andrea! I’ve actually been really impressed with the medical care I’ve gotten over the past two years with Germany’s public plan. They seem very cautious and thorough. Which is why it was probably even more baffling to me when the hospital kept giving me ridiculous food. I’m so sorry to hear you’ve been sick and on the wrong medication, what an ordeal! I hope the specialist was able to help and get you on your way to being healthy again!
April 5, 2013 @ 2:04 PM
I feel for you with the language barrier. Even though you have done your course, there would still be the worry that either they have not understood you, or vice versa. Thank God you managed to cry yourself out early.
April 5, 2013 @ 3:55 PM
Thanks Jan! The language class helped but I’m certainly not fluent. I hope to never have to deal with something like this again.
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April 7, 2013 @ 8:05 AM
[…] was sick for the entire month of March, so I appreciate your patience while I’ve been away from […]
April 7, 2013 @ 1:21 PM
I of course was with you for all of this, but I am glad you were able to write about it. Hopefully being able to laugh will help reduce the scars. 😉
I was talking to a friend about this subject a few days ago. The best line of the conversation was something like this: A hospital is like a auto repair shop. They put you back together and patch up the holes. Not really a place to get fully well.
I do think that a few days of being up all the time at the hospital means that you sleep really well the first few days home.
I am glad you are doing well, my love. 🙂
April 7, 2013 @ 3:01 PM
Thank you sweetie! I can definitely see that about hospitals, patched me up enough to get me back home where I could actually heal. I definitely needed that sleep by the time I got home. Sleeping in a hospital for 5 nights was worse than a hostel dorm. Thanks for being so wonderful and taking care of me over the past month or so.
April 8, 2013 @ 4:43 AM
Being sick is horrible any time, much less when you’re dealing with poor hospitals and language barriers. So glad to hear you’re feeling better. Hang in there – this too shall pass (pun intended?).
April 8, 2013 @ 11:09 AM
Thanks Barbara! It was definitely stressful on several fronts. I’m so glad to be on my way to recovery again. And yes, this too shall pass 😉
April 15, 2013 @ 2:59 PM
Oh no, that sounds like such a horrible ordeal.
I have a very similar disease and it would be my worst nightmare to be hauled up in a hospital abroad where there are language difficulties.
I have to say UK hospitals dont sound much different, last time I was there I shared a room with 3 other ladies although they do tend to stick to the dietary requirements.
You certainly need the rest to recover properly and get back to yourself again. Thanks for sharing, hope you feel better soon.
April 15, 2013 @ 10:43 PM
Thanks Helen! Sorry to hear you have a similar disease, I know it’s not fun. I’m glad I at least live in Germany, even if I don’t have great German language skills. That was definitely a huge part of the stress of being in the hospital. I can’t imagine having to share the room with 3 other people! I’m pretty much back to normal now, just slowly getting my strength back.
January 2, 2014 @ 4:16 AM
Ali, what town/city were you in when they put you in the hospital. So sorry you had such a terrible experience and being sick on top of that is horrible! That is one thing my husband and I are scared of is having to be hospitalized in some other coutry and we travel quite extensive.
Thanks, hope you are feeling better.
January 2, 2014 @ 4:45 PM
Thanks Peggy, this was almost a year ago, so I’m much better now. I live in Freiburg, in the southwest corner of Germany, and the hospital did take great care of me. The doctors spoke good enough English that I was comfortable, but most of the nurses did not, so that was a bit challenging. I was mostly frustrated that they kept bringing me food I couldn’t eat due to my condition at the time, but at least my husband was able to bring me food. Overall in my 2 1/2 years of living in Germany, I’ve been very happy with the healthcare system.
I think if you’re traveling in developed countries and need to go to a doctor, you should be fine. If you’re in a developing country, seek out a private hospital, not a public one. Always have travel insurance that will cover you for health emergencies because it can run into 6 figures if you need to be evacuated. And if you’re sick but can manage to get yourself out, always have a back-up plan. For example, with my condition, it’s never been something that hits me so suddenly that I couldn’t wait a few days to get somewhere better. So if I’m in Southeast Asia and need good medical care, I could quickly book a flight to Singapore or even Hong Kong (and I’ve read Bangkok would be fine too) and I would look for medical care there. In South America if I was somewhere I didn’t feel comfortable, I’d fly to Buenos Aires or maybe Santiago. But something like a major injury or some illness that’s very time sensitive is when you really need that travel insurance to kick in and get you to someplace better. I hope this helps!
Going to the Doctor Abroad: Germany | The Ramble
July 6, 2015 @ 8:05 AM
[…] never had a hospital stay in the US, but a few years ago I did end up in the hospital in Germany. I was not given any sort of hospital gown, which was nice because it meant I could hang out in my […]