There are several things I am scared of in life and yes a needle is one of them. I am not brave at heart or anywhere as a matter of fact. Im scared of heights, the dark, somtimes the light, pain, death, names I can’t pronounce, people who don’t smile, people who smile too much, stares and the list continues.
Just like most normal human beings I dread the hospital and mostly the dentist. Most of my unhealthy ‘issues’ have been brought about by my teeth. They ache, they break, they stop and start again. I could literally write a book. Anyway, I am sitted in this dimly-lit, highly depressing waiting room at Kakamega General Hospital and I am scared to my toes. There is this kid that keeps trying to eat my shoes though which is weird because sometimes I want to eat my shoes too. Picture how awesome it would be to have edible shoes. Yes, I am weird.
As I was saying, I’m scared to my toes. I have been to the dentist before but I was always with my mom or dad or best friend. Just knowing they were there almost gave me the bravery I needed to lie to myself that it wouldn’t hurt. The sound of a kid screaming in there doesn’t help at all. Incase you are wondering though, yes there is a point to all this.
Healthcare in the country is not at it’s best. A majority of the people reading this will roll their eyes and be like ‘Tell me something that I didn’t know.’ I know because I rolled my eyes. I had to wait in line to pay for something then I had to wait in another line and I heard one man say, ‘In Kenya, queuing is a part of the healing process.’ And it is. Walking into hospitals or dispensaries you find long lines of people some almost or already fatal that have to wait for this or that.
The lines would not really be a problem if they moved faster but as expected most hospitals are short staffed or as is in the case of public hospitals, the staff just doesn’t care.
I have been here since 10 or earlier and I have yet to see the doctor. I have been to the x-ray around 5 times now and despite paying alot for it, the guy still messed it up. It’s now 2 o’clock and I am honestly hungry and sleepy and most importantly alone. Everyone else seems to have gotten tired of waiting on the doctors who apparently just had to eat and left.
The waiting room wouldn’t be so bad if it didn’t look like one of those hallways ‘Wrong Turn’ is filmed. 2:30 pm still no doctor. The pain is almost unbearable now and I almost cry but then the door opens and this old lady comes out and asks for my name and reassures me the doctor is coming. Do I believe her? Of course not but what’s a girl to do?
2:50pm, finally I’m called in and the doctor asks me a few questions then leaves. Wonderful. He comes back with more questions and by this time, I honestly really want to punch him please. I hate pain and I hate teeth that are painful and doctors that know my teeth hurt but still ask questions like, ‘Does it hurt?’ No, I just decided to come say hey and have a huge needle stuck in my gum for the fun of it.
Anyway about half an hour later, it’s over and as I finally leave my mouth is so numb I doubt it’s there and I have to text the ‘bodaboda’ guy my address because talking is not my forte at the moment.
The healthcare system in the country is a definite fail. The waiting ,the arrogance and the insufficiency is the reason why we are slowly killing the future. Private hospitals for the commom mwananchi cost a fortune and alot of people depend on the government provided services. I’m not pointing fingers at the government for this because the doctors too are miserably failing to do their job. This ignorance in turn costs life in a place where people turn to, to have their lives saved.