While lining up to pay in SNR I saw the guy in front of me scrolling through his phone. His eyes popped out as he paused scrolling and stared at today’s COVID statistics: 17,000+ new cases! I had to do the groceries today. We have a neighbor who brings all our groceries to our house everyday, but he had to take care of the cremation of his brother in law, Mr. P, who had died from COVID. I had been doing Viber consults with Mr. P for his COVID symptoms, but he couldn’t find any hospital with vacancy. Upon learning of his death I reviewed our Viber conversations and I counted 7 of my messages begging him to proceed to the emergency room. Everything was full.
In my Messenger: 3 new referrals for online consults for possible COVID. One of them was a relative, who lives a few houses away. His COVID seemed to be mild, so I told him I’d just send a PDF of a prescription. He asked if he could get a hard copy of the prescription because he needs to ask someone else to buy it and he doesn’t have a printer. This, of course, defeats the purpose of minimizing any physical contact. So after parking the car I surreptitiously walked to their house, folded the prescription into 4, wrapped it in plastic, and flung it over the gate like a frisbee.
If it’s any consolation (spoilers: it’s NOT), at least this horrific pandemic happened during the era of the fast internet. Had this happened in 1991, and had I already been a doctor at the time, I imagine that I would be biking all over town flinging prescriptions tied to a rock over my patients’ gates.