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Bed shortage at Royal Columbian Hospital Confirmed

January 30, 2007: At the end of September 2004, for approximately 10 days, I experience the bed shortage at Royal Columbian Hospital. It appears that in three years, not much has changed.

After my mild TBI in July, I was sent home after 8 days without any follow-up or therapy or consultation by a neurologist. He had no time, and I was displaying positive signs of recovery, although my personality was undergoing changes.

So later, when I went in for a schedule CAT scan, the technician notice what appeared to be a subarachnoid hematoma. They wouldn't let me leave; I was even told that if I did leave, then they couldn't keep track of me.

So I quickly called my brother to get clothes and underwear to prepare for the long stay. Most of the time during the stay, I got so bored that I signed out of my ward so I could walk around the hospital, eating the cafeteria food, reading a book of science fiction stories my brother gave to me, and especially of all, going to the hospital library filled with books related to many medical fields.

While here at the hospital, I may have spent about 10-20 hours studying the effects of psychiatric medication on schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder and borderline personality disorder. As well, I tried to find out more about behavior therapies for these psychiatric disorders.

I even got myself my shaver to keep myself neat in appearance. Finally, I even included my PDA so I could keep myself occupied by making diary entries.

Ten days later, near the beginning of October, I get the CAT scan. After 45 minutes in an ambulance to Royal Columbian Hospital, I wait for my appointment on the scan table and get it done. Then I return by ambulance to Surrey Memorial.

So I knew back in 2004 that the bed crisis at Royal Columbian was real.

Weeks later, around January 2005, I find out that the subarachnoid hematoma was minor, as the bleeding had stopped and the blood had either moved out of the arachnoid space into the CSF (Cerebral Spinal Fluid) or absorbed into the body. Much of the healing of this injury I attribute to meditation on thankfulness for being alive and forgiveness towards the unknown assailant.

After I returned home, I made another trip to the hospital in 2006 with my best friend Frank. I spent about 10 minutes learning more about borderline personality disorder and Cognitive Behavior Therapy.

Originally posted: January 30, 2007 0958H
Update posted: March 2, 2013 2006H

Jimmy Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre:

Terms used in article:

mild TBI: I prefer the term "mild traumatic brain injury" (mild TBI) over the old term "concussion", which has been overused. The injury does not go away completely, as behavior and psychological functioning were temporarily altered for five years in my case.

subarachnoid hematoma: See:
"Whether through trauma or disease, subarachnoid hemorrhages are caused by blood being released by a damaged blood vessel and accumulating in the subarachnoid space."

See also:

The subarachnoid space is "the area between the arachnoid membrane and the pia mater surrounding the brain. " It is one of three layers protecting the brain, located between the outer dura mater and the inner pia mater, and separated from the latter by the subarachnoid space.

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