Stay the frak at home

Updated: Sep 13

Let me tell you a story.
Ten years ago, I was hospitalised with severe sepsis. I’d gone into hospital with extreme neck pain, headache, and fever.

Not once did anyone look at my neck. I have the the notes from the hospital. They show I repeatedly complained of neck pain throughout my entire stay.

I had X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, ultrasounds, ECGs, EKGs, blood tests, urinalysis… But no one even palpated my neck.

Why? Because they had decided I was a drug seeker. Every time I complained of neck pain, they replied, ‘we already told you you could have more morphine.’

If they’d aimed those daily X-rays just a little higher than my lungs, they’d have seen what I needed them to see: the massive abscess in my spine.

Four weeks of antibiotics and one international flight later, the pain returned. I went to my GP in London. I felt like an idiot, wasting precious NHS time for something as stupid and petty as neck pain.

Fortunately for me, my GP didn’t think my pain was stupid or petty. She referred me for an urgent X-ray – of my neck this time. Crazy, right?

Long story short, I had emergency surgery to save my life.

That scar right there? I earned that bastard.

In the aftermath of that surgery, doctors began to question why I had so many infections. It ultimately led to me being diagnosed with not one, not two, but three primary immune deficiencies. My immunologist says I’m fascinating.

I’m also incredibly lucky and I know it. I would be dead if I’d stayed in Canada. No doubt, no question, no hyperbole. Dead.

Anyway, this is the story of why I don’t trust the Canadian health services.

So, when I say I trust Canada’s handling of coronavirus more than the UK’s, I’m not just speaking out my arse. When I tell you that if I had to choose between being hospitalised in Canada right now and in the UK, I’d pick Canada, those words are anything but empty.

I’m scared. And I don’t want to die.

Please, please, please… Stay the frak at home and save lives. Save my life.

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