Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Italian Hospitals

Well I've been out for a while having a bit of surgery. Before you start worrying about me, it all went very well and I think the out come will prove to be positive. It was one week ago yesterday and I'm almost back to normal.

I went to the hospital in Padova because they have a top rated center and use the DaVinci robot aided laproscopy. Really the state of the art. I'd say that the Italians take a bit of an older view of surgery otherwise. They want you in the day before and want you to stay 5 days after. The doctors are great, the nurses too and the whole staff seemed to be doing a fine job. The food was iffy but hey who expects really good food in a hospital. It was actually ok sometimes even good just a little bland. If I had to complain it would be about the of level maintenance, but then I was told that they are starting a big remodel of the area I was in next month, even putting bathrooms in the rooms. For me it was down the hall. And then there is of course the 4 to a room concept. I'd advise anyone to pack along some ear plugs and an eye shield, makes a big difference.

Having 3 other beds in a room does give one a good chance to view a certain aspect of Italian life and values. I'm not making comparisons just observations. What I observed was a lot of care and affection, a willingness to help others and a true sense of sympathy for their pain. I guess I came away with a bit of a renewed faith in the goodness of the human spirit.


  1. Sounds like you made a potentially bad experience into a positive one--good on you!

    You did hit on, though, my two biggest issues with many Italian hospitals--the bathroom down the hall and the lack of privacy in "your" room. May we all only have to deal with that only a few days out of our lives (if that!).

    Glad to hear you're feeling better :)

  2. Thanks for your kind comments. I think we sometimes have to consider the cost. A bathroom down the hall seems a small price to pay for the relaively free health care. The operation I just had would have cost something like $30,000 in the US. Here I paid nothing, even the various tests before the surgery were exempt from the usual payments because they were required for the surgery.