Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet


The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

Hospital hijinx

Oct. 23, 2000
5:45 p.m.
Munson 308

Nooooooo. I thought as I watched the Cutco blade miss the block of cheese and swoop toward my roommate’s finger. Too late, the damage was done. His finger was sliced through to the bone.

The two of us contemplated where to go, GW Student Health or the emergency room. Even though they are only one block from each other, we knew a wrong move could make a world of difference. My wounded roommate, Grant, and I put our faith in Student Health. Yeah, we’ve heard the complaints, we’ve taken all the usual warnings into consideration, but we had this crazy feeling that this time a student would walk away cured and happy. This time, we thought, would be different.

The odds are against us walking in. The waiting room was full. We politely waited a few minutes for the receptionists to finish up a chat while the blood from Grant’s finger threatened to drip to the floor, then we were asked our business. Slicing cheese – sharp knife – blood. Easy enough to understand, and the receptionist does.

I’m not sure if we’ve stopped taking walk-ins, but I’ll check, the receptionist said.

The future of Grant’s index finger hinged on whether or not students without appointments were allowed to be seen. We lucked out and a doctor rushes out immediately and took a look at the situation. Or at least that’s what we thought. Apparently, we had only made it to the next stage in the quest for a doctor, the inspection room, a.k.a., the second, smaller waiting room. After Grant and I mull over what an awful decision we made not going to the emergency room, a real doctor comes in to take a look at the damage. It is bad, he said. It is deep, he said. It will need stitches. Finally, we are getting somewhere, or so we thought. We don’t do stitches here, he said. So we were escorted out of GW Student Health to option B – the emergency room. A logical enough place to go, why didn’t we think of that?

Walking to the emergency room we start to feel like the subject of a cruel game. We were being bounced around like pinballs in a large medical maze. We kept bouncing into everyone, everyone except a doctor.

We meet John, a friendly security guard who asks us to fill out papers. Then on to Kevin and Andrea, two nurses who took Grant’s blood pressure and joked a bit to ease his nerves. Then we meet a not-so-friendly secretary who collects insurance information. If Grant’s finger was not getting fixed, at least we were meeting new and interesting people.

The next character we met was a nurse whose sole function was to seat people in a waiting area. In the emergency room waiting area another lady who calls herself a writer, took notes for the doctor that would eventually surface to patch up Grant. Next up was Nehal, a GW medical student whose nametag simply read Medicine. No medicine needed here, just a couple stitches, but he talked with us for a while. Grant and I started to wonder if the stitches would ever come.

Eleven people and about two hours after the start of this strange adventure, finally some progress was made. Dr. Massey from the Emergency Department would knit Grant’s finger. This is where Grant and I went separate ways. Grant was whisked away for his mini-operation, only to meet two more people before leaving the place – a reporter who takes notes during the procedure and a nurse who gives the final paperwork.

What an amazing cast of characters for four simple stitches. They say you meet someone new everyday. My roommate’s wounded hand gave me 16 days worth.

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