Tuesday, March 20, 2012

also passing this along

Blogger Michael Hurt of Scribblings of the Metropolitician suffered a stroke earlier this month. All the news can be found at ZenKimchi.

This kinda' bugged me, but it sounds so familiar:

Mike’s mother is Korean and works in the cardiology section of a hospital in the U.S. But she’s admitted that being in a Korean hospital has been a bit of a culture shock. She has to go buy supplies that American hospitals usually have available in the rooms, like rubber gloves. Patients in Korean hospitals don’t really get much care. The families supply the meals. There’s little, if any, concept of bedside manner. And the lack of communication is astounding. [emphasis added]

For example, they had trouble tapping a vein to get some blood. So a doctor set up a tap so that hospital workers could easily get blood when needed. That didn’t stop some person at 4 a.m. from sticking his foot to try to get more blood.

Joe goes on to talk about one of the positives of Korean hospitals. Be sure to click over and read. For me, one of the things I dread about a long-term stay in Korea is precisely the question of hospital care. Not that the American system is perfect-- over at the Kevin's Walk blog, I wrote at length, on several occasions, about the problems our family experienced with Mom's care-- but the Korean system often seems to lack certain basics, like proper and thorough communication, whose absence would make a hospital stay nightmarish. Patient advocacy seems even more important in the Korean system than it is in the American system.



  1. Really sorry to hear about Michael.

    I spent three days in a Korean hospital a few years ago and I thought I was going to go stark raving mad. Everything you mentioned except the blood draws (I have big veins) I experienced as well. My Korean GF stayed with me, (thank god, I can't imagine what I would have done without her!) but I still didn't have a clue what was going on. Periodically, they'd roll me downstairs from some test or another, but I'd never get any feedback on the results. On day 3 I revolted and refused my morning IV bag. Several hours later a doctor appeared and when he couldn't provide a diagnosis I insisted that I be discharged. I'm pretty sure they thought I was crazy and by that time I pretty much was...

    I'm a big fan of certain aspects of Korean medicine like the annual preventative diagnostics they do. But if heaven forbid I ever need to be hospitalized again, I hope it's in the USA...

  2. Weird--whenever I try to visit the ZenKimchi blog, Chrome tells me that the webpage has a "redirect loop" and won't load.

  3. Strange, indeed. FWIW, Chrome went fritzy on my Mac last year, so I ditched it and returned to my old fave, Firefox. Can you reach ZenKimchi through any other browsers?

  4. I'm glad he's doing okay.

    Maybe a bunch of people in the K-blogs can pitch in and write articles for Yahae! to keep it going while he's recuperating.



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