A Morning in the Emergency Room

Do we have parasites?

The tail end of the camel safari tale found us getting into Jaipur at 4:30am, convinced that we had parasites in our system that were causing the Delhi Belly.

As such, we wanted to get our poo tested and the man at the train station sent us to the emergency room of the local government run public hospital. What we saw there shocked even Carrie, who spent her two years of service in Nicaragua in the health sector working frequently in hospitals.

 

Inside an Indian emergency room in Jaipur

There was blood everywhere: especially on the gurneys used to bring patients in from the ambulances, and did not seem to be cleaned at any point before reuse. Flies buzzed around and all of the waiting rooms were filled with locals sleeping on the floor, either waiting for their loved ones or for service.

Still, the hospital is free to anyone who needs it and in a city of millions, a large percentage of which live well below the poverty line, it’s far better than nothing.

In the end, we wound up sitting in the waiting room for around three hours, as the lab to do our test did not open until 9am.

At 8am we found a lab across the street that did the test for $2 per person (as opposed to for free at the hospital) and, after a day of killing time in Jaipur (at Jantar Mantar, which had more than a dozen abstract looking sculptures that used the sun to tell time, date, position of the earth and more) waiting for our results, it turned out that we were just fine.

 

The test results are confirmed

A few days later our bodies agreed with that diagnosis, so we can only assume that we had either a mild case of food poisoning or our bodies were just adjusting to the new food.

Either way, I had convinced myself at one point or another that I had malaria, typhoid, both hepatitis a and b and every other disease our guide book said you could possibly get in India. Ahh the joys of being a hypochondriac traveling abroad 😛