Much Time Has Past


Our lives have now changed forever. It has been a few months since my last entry. Desiree has come through the acute stage of her condition without suffering any further set backs. The Royal Melbourne Hospital have treated her well and she is coming back from the brink of death. They say that you “check your dignity at the front door” when you enter an acute care hospital. Desiree is still paralysed all down her left side and is unable to walk, stand or even sit up straight. When she needs to go to the bathroom, the nursing staff wheel in a crane type device that hoists her out of bed and swings her precariously towards the awaiting commode. – She hates that crane…

We have been advised that she is stable enough to be transferred to Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney which happens to be right across the road from where we live. For some arcane reason the transfer needs to be done in a process called acute to acute. This means that she will need to be transported by air ambulance from Melbourne to Sydney. I am alarmed when the hospital tells me that this cost is not covered by our health insurance as it is not an emergency situation. Dollar signs start to flood my mind as I estimate what this might cost. This fear is confirmed when the hospital advise that they have already got quotes from both the Victorian and New South Wales air ambulance services. The cost is likely to be between $6,000 and $8,000.

After having reconciled in my mind that this is a cost that must be bourn, a representative from the Royal Melbourne Hospital came into our room and announced….

The hospital does not think that it is fair for you and Desiree to have to foot this transfer bill so we have decided to fully fund the transfer. – Could this be true?

It was. So within the next few days Desiree would be loaded onto and air ambulance and I would have to pack up from the hotel room I had spent the last six weeks in and drive back home to Sydney.


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