Concuss This, Telehealth

by - February 22, 2011

The man on the other end of the line is bored and baritone.  "Thank you for calling Telehealth Ontario.  How can I help?"  Completely monotone.  Doesn't care that my nine-year old might have a concussion.

I explain the story.  Quick.  Concise.  I just need to know if I should take him to emerg and let a doctor check him out.

"I'm sorry," he mutters without apology.  "All of our nurses are busy.  I can have one call you in about ninety minutes."  I hang up.

I call the hospital.

"Thank you for calling the Bruce Grey Health Unit.  If this is an emergency please hang up and call 911.  If you have a question regarding a medical condition you can access a registered nurse at any time by calling Telehealth at 1-866-797-0000."


[you can kind of see his bruise in this photo]
It's 12:30 am.  I'll be my own nurse.  I slip into the boys room.  Zander is sprawled, mouth hanging open, breathing even.  The lump on his forehead is darkening into an angry purple bruise but the swelling seems to have gone down.  He's peaceful.  Sleep divorcing him from memories of plunging off the sheer edge of the gas station snow bank - said forehead breaking his fall against freshly plowed asphalt.

"Zander?"  I shake him.  Gently at first.  Then harder.  I gain a groan and click on the bedside lamp.  His lids squeeze tight against the glaring assault.  "Zander?"  He fights me weakly.  "Zander...what's your name, Zander?"

"Whaaat?"  He's trying to block the light with a palm.

"What's your name Zander?  Do you know who you are?"

He squints and tries to hide his face in a pillow.  "Ioknow," he mumbles.

"What's your name?"


"Zander, what's your name?"

He sits up.  "Liam.  Liam.  Liam."

"Your name is Liam?"

And then he really wakes up.  Finally focuses on my face.  "What?  No.  I'm Zander."

"Where do you live?"

"Durham."  Like I'm a dummy.

"How many fingers am I holding up?"

He watches my hand.  "Two.  Four.  One."

I click off the light and kiss his hair.  "Good night, Zander.  See you in two to three hours."

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  1. Perfect reading for today. Mine took a tumble down four stairs and stopped himself with his face into carpet. But I think yours still had the worse fall. Way to be the caring mom, even late at night.

  2. Way to buck up and be the family nurse... hopefully telehealth will hire nurses round the clock. :)

  3. You know I think Durham gives out health advice over the phone- 519 249- 2340. If not Chesley does 519 363 2340.
    You know, for the next head injury.

  4. thanks Anne - hopefully there's no "next" but I'll file that away just in case : )

  5. I like how your past 3 blogs have been about Women Power. Keep challenging stereotypes :)


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