June 24, Monday – I knew it!

By Tiffany Abera

So it turns out my continuous cough and clogged nose was something serious after all.  The doctor said I most likely have a respiratory infection and inflammation.  I was prescribed an antibiotic and an anti-inflammatory to help cure whatever it is that I got from the kids.  If it’s not better by the end of the treatment then I have to go to the hospital. I don’t think it will come to that or at least I hope not.

Also, I learned that it is cheaper to buy medicine from the Red Cross than it is to buy it from the private pharmacy. And you don’t need to actually physically see a doctor for a prescription.  My uncle went for me and explained to his friend who was the doctor my symptoms and wrote a prescription as if I was right there. That would never happen back at home and the medicine also wouldn’t have cost 39Birr or roughly $2 for the medicine without insurance.  Even with insurance it probably wouldn’t have been that cheap.

I am constantly reminding myself that although 39Birr seems extremely cheap for me there are whole families who only live off of $1 per day.  If that family were to try and pay for a doctor’s visit plus the medicine, they wouldn’t have been able to afford it unless they didn’t eat for 3 days.   It made me think how long would someone go before they received medical treatment from a professional if they weren’t able to afford it? And although our health care system is well… some would argue substandard compared to other First World Nations, I can only feel privileged that I have access to a doctor and am able to afford treatment if I need it.

Don’t worry though, I’ll be back to my usual self in a week’s time!


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