By Chuck Woodbury
A man knocked on my door yesterday at 4 p.m. “Gail asked me to come get you,” he said. “She tripped and hit her head on concrete.”
I was out the door in 20 seconds. I found Gail sitting on the ground, wrapped in a thick blanket, surrounded by a half dozen RVers, holding her head with a blood-stained towel near her left eye. “Call an ambulance,” someone said. But Gail had not lost consciousness and talked normally. We determined it was best for me to drive her immediately to an urgent care facility about six miles away rather than wait for an ambulance.
So I ran back to our RV, scared and anxious about the extent of her injuries.
Quickly, I grabbed her jacket, a blanket and her purse with her driver’s license and insurance card. I tried to think of what else I should bring, but in my semi-panic state I couldn’t think of anything. Time was wasting.
I jumped into our car, picked up Gail and we sped down the highway to the clinic. They checked her and said she needed to get to the nearby hospital emergency room for a CAT scan. I thought I knew where the hospital was, so we were off. Wrong, I didn’t know! So we drove in circles for a few minutes before we figured things out. What a critical mistake this could have been if time were critical!
The hospital performed the CAT scan, and it turned out she was okay, the only damage temporary — a black eye and some other temporary discoloration on the left side of her face.
What I learned:
•Know exactly where the nearest hospital or urgent care facility is located from you and how to get there.
•Be sure you know at all times where your partner keeps his or her wallet or purse.
•Be sure you know what medications your partner takes (I didn’t). What if Gail were unconscious?
•Be sure you know if your partner has any drug allergies.
And what about getting to the hospital when a 911 call may not be the best way? If you’re traveling with a motorhome, with no tow car, do both occupants know how to drive the RV? Read this article for more about this.
Although it was not necessary this time, all occupants of your RV should know where the first aid kit is located (be sure you have one).
I suppose it would also be important to know your partner’s blood type.
Gail was able to go online with her phone and access her medical records, which helped her determine if she had a recent tetanus shot plus any other relevant information useful to treat her. Check with your primary care doctor to see if online access to your records is available.
Would you please comment about other things or preparations we should have or know about in a medical emergency? I’m sure there are plenty I’ve missed.
But first, a quick poll: