Hospital Stays VS Long-Haul Flights

After 56 hours and approx 8 unfinished movies (I always fall asleep before the end), I couldn’t help but feel I could have completed a round the world journey. There are many similarities to being stuck in a hospital and stuck in an airplane.

Apologies to my non-flying friends if you don’t get as much amusement from this as the others.

My observations on both…

The Cabin: In hospital you are provided with a nice comfy bed, a touch of a First Class no matter what your budget. I was a private patient in a public hospital, I am not sure how beds would differ if I was in a private hospital – better quality plastic covering? My bed was so old-fashion that it had to be wound up and down with a lever at the end of the bed, technology upgrades definitely required. As I was in isolation, I was lucky enough to have my own room…oh the luxury!

The Food: Hands down hospital food is economy class standard…actually worse. I would happily eat (and I have many times before) a tasty economy curry, however in hospital, I found it hard to finish my meals. People know I like to eat, and I’m not too fussy either, so that’s saying something! Also, a drinks trolley came around between each meal service – this is what Qantas likes to call “continuous refreshment”.

The Call Bell: There is a rule of thumb about using the call bell on flights – unless you are stuck by the window, with an inability to get out, or having a medical emergency, then it is advisable to stretch your legs and take a walk to the galley to make your request. We honestly do have your best interest at heart, DVT is a serious issue, you really should move around more. Well, in hospital, I was forced to press the call bell. It goes against everything I believe in, but when you are in isolation, you don’t have a choice. I did feel for the nurses when I could hear the call bells going off all through the night..

The Entertainment: Having entertainment issues on a long-haul flight can really make-or-break the journey. Hospital stays are no different. Since I have private health (thank you Bupa), my TV usage was free. The 5 movie channels plus standard TV made the 56 hours fly by. The picture quality wasn’t the best, and the sound would randomly stop every now and then – complaints I have had to deal with many times before. I was a little jealous when a nurses told me Ward 5 had flat screen TV’s! Say WHAT! I was hatching a plan to get transferred to Ward 5, until I found out Ward 5 was ICU and CCU…NO thanks!

The Service: We all know this is the backbone of it all. I had a rotation of 7 different nurses care for me during my stay, and all but 1 were amazing. I know this is no different with cabin crew – there a lot of people still in the profession that really don’t want to be there, and if you are their passenger, you’ll know about it. The rest of us, are happy to look after you.

As much as I would have preferred to fly around with world instead of lying in a hospital bed, I am happy not to have jetlag, cankles or suitcases to unpack.



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