If you’re sick, please stay home!

The last few appointments I’ve had at the Bone Marrow Transplant Clinic, I’ve had to wear a mask into the facility.  Everyone has always had to wash their hands before entering, but the masks are a new thing.  It’s meant to protect the patients whose immune systems have been wiped out or weakened by high dose chemo.  A few days ago when I was there, I saw a woman walk up to the desk to check in and heard her say, “I think I might have the flu.”  They whisked her off to an exam room so she wouldn’t be putting others at risk.  The first thing I wondered was why didn’t she call ahead and ask if she should show up for her appointment?  She could have rescheduled.  I noticed that they sanitized the desk top after she was gone, and I imagine they probably had to do the same with the exam room.

It seems like the flu (seasonal and H1N1) is getting all the attention lately.  Have a look at this article to take your mind off of it all: Don’t Be a Statistic

Myeloma Treatment

8 Comments

  1. Margaret

    Until recently, I had been going to Careggi, Florence’s main hospital, for my blood tests. With Careggi, you cannot make an appointment. It’s a first-come, first-served basis (see below).
    But a friend recently told me about a smaller hospital that takes people by appointment only…so I made an appointment by phone for Saturday, and it was fabulous.
    Instead of waiting for HOURS in a huge hall (=Careggi) filled with potentially flu-ridden people (no way of knowing that), I went in at the allotted time and was out within a few minutes. That’s how things should work. At Careggi, instead, even if you get there at 6 AM (!), you always have about 50 people in front of you, and the nurses who sign you in don’t arrive until 7:15. Then you have to stand in line in another area, a smaller room, also always packed, to have your blood drawn. It always takes a minimum of 2 hours…if you are lucky, that is. In the meantime, you have been coughed and sneezed on…no way of avoiding that. Nobody wears a mask.
    In sum, I am so happy to have found this other hospital! Yay!
    After this long ramble, you can imagine that I totally agree with you. People who even remotely suspect they might be coming down with the flu or a cold or anything else should have the sense not to go have blood tests, do the shopping, go see movies and so forth. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way!

  2. susie hemingway

    I worry so much every time I take my husband to the hospital for his check-ups. How it seems that people leave their brains at home. Coming to out-patients with signs of flu, terrible coughs and with no thought of fellow visitors. We sit outside in the corridor and take the risk of missing our slot but fearing in some clinics the dangers lurking there for someone with extremely low white counts. My best wishes to you as your continue your journey – stay safe.

  3. LaCootina

    Even now, a year after my SCT, I limit outings to grocery, drugstore, and doctor’s appointments. I freak when I’m in the grocery and someone in line is snuffling and wheezing and sounds like they’re about the hock up a lung. I don’t know what else I can do other than limit my exposure.

  4. Larry

    I agree that in an immuno comprimised facilty that sick people should attempt to stay home but I think that no giving a vaccine to an immuno compromised individual should be just as much common sense. Isn’t a vaccine putting the virus into a person just a someone who is sick has the potential to do the same?

    • Beth

      We should never get a “live” vaccine! Also, what I was told by my doctors at various times, was that someone needs to have somewhat of an immune system in order for the vaccine to have any effect – to develop an immunity to the virus.

  5. Michael

    Don´t visit these doctors if you are sick !

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOeaZNBBIjs

  6. Margaret

    By the way, I read that masks, unless they are the professional expensive kind, can make matters worse, since they provide the perfect moist environment that the virus needs to survive. Kinda yucky, when you think about it…anyway, I am not going to wear one!

    • Beth

      I read that someplace, too. I can’t remember where it was. While I’m at the SCT clinic, I have to wear one. After my SCT though, I used to wear one when scooping cat litter.

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