Blog #4 The Unexpected

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As I settle into my third month living in England I would like to think I am building creditable experience for what it’s like to live in the United Kingdom. I have gained great insight into the culture, food, transportation, weather, and history it holds. I have gone to nearby cities such as London ( the biggest city in the United Kingdom ), Birmingham, Leicester, Manchester, and more. I use public transportation to get me one from place to another which includes a train, the underground ( which is like a subway), taxis, and the bus. I have found this to be a great way to gather first-hand insight into the customs, norms, and groups of individuals. I attend the local farmer’s market in Coventry to purchase my groceries for the week, fresh produce, meats, dairy products, and more. At the market, I have been able to build a relationship with locals and interact with people from different regions of the world.

As a public health major, I have a lot of personal interest in global health. This means I have an interest in health in a worldwide context, how health is accessible, and the quality of it. Two weeks ago, I may have manifested my interest into a reality in a way I was not expecting. It was a Friday and I had a list of assignments to complete at a local coffee shop before my friend arrives by train from a nearby city that afternoon. I head to the kitchen and rush to make my usual avocado toast with eggs before leaving for the coffee shop. As I finish cooking my egg, I begin to cut my avocado and this is where the journey begins. As I am holding the avocado in one hand and the knife in the other, in an attempt to pull the seed out with the knife, the avocado slides out of my hand and the knife stabs my palm deeply. At that moment I did not feel pain but shook as to what just happened and how deep the actual cut was. As blood starts to drip I reach for a washcloth and apply pressure. I start to lose eye-sight as the room turns white and I can feel my body heating up. I knew I was going to faint so I knock on the door closest to the kitchen to call for help. My roommate opens the door, I could tell I woke her up, and let her know I stabbed my hand by accident. After finishing that sentence I tell her to go to the receptionist for first aid and faint.

I regain consciousness after seconds. Once the receptionist arrive they provided me with a proper bandage and wrap to hold pressure on the cut. Afterward, they tell me to go to a hospital because I might need stitches and called me a taxi ( free of charge). My roommate offered to accompany me and was a great source of comfort during this unpredictable moment in time. As I was being rushed downstairs I was worried because I left my insurance card in my room but the receptionist said to not worry about that because services like this are free. I had my doubts but had no time to go back up to my room. Once arriving at the hospital I entered the ER for minor injuries and saw a small volume of people waiting. I checked and provided all necessary information like my current address and emergency contact as well as personal information about myself.

Shortly after I was pulled into a room where an individual sat me down to tell me everything that is covered and what might not be covered. He broke down every possible detail and explanation, and he gave me all his contact information and got mine before leaving. What I experienced was a great service of explanation and left me with questions answered that I didn’t even know I had. Afterward, I was taken to get X-rays of my hand and then given a shot tetanus shot on my arm due to the open wound. Minutes after I was brought into a room to get my stitches done and was able to leave with zero fees. The accommodations I stayed at provided us with a taxi back to our stay at no charge. The service was effective and had a great quality of care. When removing my stitches a week after I was able to easily book an appointment with the nurse on campus and come in the next day.

Overall, while this wasn’t the way I intended to grasp my insight on health care in the United Kingdom it sure did work in giving me great insight.