Doctor Peter Lord had just finished a cup of cafex in the hospital staff lounge when his pager implant announced an emergency staff alert. “Dr Lord here, what’s the problem?” he sub-vocalised to his pager “Medical case incoming via Hovertcar, symptoms match possible coronary. Vehicle ETA 3 minutes” the pager replied.
Standing up from his float chair the doctor began to make his way out of the lounge at a brisk pace heading towards the emergency unit. A he walked he sub-vocalised to his pager once more “OK, I’m on my way, can you give the patients details”. When the pager gave the patients name and occupation he almost stumbled. “Did you say Miss Ruth Williams, teacher?” he asked his pager aloud. The pager confirmed the name.
“Contact Principle Reed at Westfield in my name and tell him Miss Williams is ill and will be admitted into the hospital for treatment some time in the next five minuets. Next contact Donald Stains in the legal department and give him the same message”.
Continuing at a brisk pace towards the emergency unit he was met on the way by some of the other members of the standby emergency team which hadn’t dealt with anything major for some time, among the team he spotted a nurse a nurse he knew as both an old school friend and a competent emergency nurse. “Listen up team you’ve all had the details, Linda I’ll want you to stay with the patient, Larry, Joe Take the stretcher outside the main doors, everyone else standby for resuscitation and monitoring.” he called out to them as they entered the Emergency room. Looking at the nurse called Linda he motioned to indicate that he needed speak with her.
“Linda it’s Miss Williams from school she’ll need to be handled just right, you and I both know what she can be like“ he said to her quietly when she was close enough to hear him “I remember her, stern but fair, if she gets the same treatment she may either appreciate it or treat us both like naughty kids” she replied grinning. “OK, but you will have to set up the routine for her nursing care and brief the nurses about her independence”.
When the hovercar containing the patient arrived at the emergency entrance Larry and Joe were there to met it and placed her on the stretcher gently and float it into the emergency room. “Stupid machine, I told it not to bring me here” she was muttering as they carried out their task. Manoeuvring the floating stretcher and it still muttering occupant into position in the emergency room Dr Lord and the nurse Linda came and took up stations either side of the stretcher.
“Peter Lord is that you” the old woman on the stretcher asked, “Yes Miss Williams” he replied politely, “Good, this is not something you can deal with. Do not try any standard hospital tests, someone will get hurt, this is not a heart attack, it’s a system failure and it will take specially trained medical engineers to repair it, this hospital has not got the required people or equipment. I tried telling that stupid machine of mine to take me home but it would not accept any override codes” she authoritatively said to him making him feel as if he were once more back at school.
“What about checking your heart rate and blood pressure just to be on the safe side?” he enquired in that sort of sceptical doctors’ voice that they seem to use when patients try tell them what’s wrong. “No! I’m sorry Peter; My pulse and blood pressure are both normal, but there is no way to confirm that without those specially trained medical engineers and their equipment being here. Look Peter, the only thing you can do for me here is to put me into a private room somewhere until these people arrive” she told him firmly. “All right Miss Williams, if you can tell me when this medical engineers are due I’ll see what can be done about a room” he replied in a concerned tone. “Hmm, given the nature of the call they should be here by no later than 8:30am today” she said smugly.