Last saturday, we put closure to what has been the worst holiday we ever had; by ironically having dinner in an Indonesian Restaurant in Breda called Bali, which happens to be one of our favourite restaurant in the area.
As the “Rijsttafel” was been displayed before our eyes, my hubby and I started discussing the fact of been so grateful to be alive, together and able to talk about it after almost 4 weeks now of been back.
Truth be said, it is always fantastic, amazing & also “Gezellig” once your holidays go better than you expected but if not, the bitter taste related to that particular place will linger for a while. Now, Bali is a beautiful, peaceful place with incredible friendly people but for the love of god, DON’T GET SICK!.
My husband had a sever lung infection called: “Pleura Pneumonia” while on business trip the week before in Jakarta, Indonesia. Aparently through AC or from the environment.
How I saw it, is that we went from been in a dimension of a Luxurious heavenly beautiful Villa with our own swimming pool, flowers in my hair and hardly any clothes on! to the dimension of strugggling with an Ambulance across Bali trying to get to the nearest hospital in Denpasar (Capital of Bali) with hardly also anything on, no flowers in my hair and tears drowning my face.
When we finally made it through the crazy traffic, which is a really big issue there I think. We managed to arrived to Denpasar, helped by which has been our first medical contact Bali Clinic, a small clinic about 15mins away from where we were staying, after not been able to help us and also myself transforming to a killing monster, they finally got me an ambulance and took us to which seemed to be the best in town Kasih Ibu Hospital.
Through the tears, the heartache and the whole failure in diagnose, they manage nevertheless to make me sign the bills, get all my insurance details, and call inmediately to check that all my details are correct and good enough for them…in otherwords, “All their invoices would be paid”
Probably I live in a very irrealistic bubble (and I know it is also a business), but I would of never thought that it would be so cold and un-emotional, as if we are just a kettle to be dealt with. And nights to come while on the couch of the hospital room, I was in panic and wondering “…and if we didn’t have all our insurances right or not enough money or whatsoever…would they have really helped us?…
In the days to come, the only sentence I couldn’t get out of my head was the doctor saying to me constantly upon our arrival: “Your husband has a fatal lung condition and is not very easily cured”, and I ask myself, “When did having tact, a heart and been human ever stop existing”. Don’t get me wrong but just imagine the situation, I am in complete shock, trying to keep it together as much as I can, crying my eyes out, my husband is half unconscious, people around me talking a language I don’t understand, doing things I am not even aware of before my eyes, we are freezing inside, and there is no one absolutely no one really coming and saying “We will help him, he will be ok, this is the plan for the next days…”
After running some tests, scans and some medicines, we finally get transferred to a small room, where there is a bed, a small seperate bathroom, a closet and a small couch that becomes my bed for the next 10 days.
To keep it short, as there are a lot of unpleasant details. I just state the main ones, the staff was very nice and helpful with what they knew. The doctors lacked knowledge and were not very ethical in my eyes as once I had serious questions to ask or really needed help that they didn’t want to help me with, they simply didn’t face me at all, and let the nurses give me constant excuses, “Doctor will come later, He is still busy, he is giving a lecture at University” and all the nurses knew these excuses by heart!
Adding to that, SOS International was the main contact we had from The Netherlands, they only really acted once they received information from Hospital in Denpasar otherwise, waiting was the best option for the day. So the feeling was that you are really constantly helpless between two parts, The Hospital in Denpasar wants to keep us longer since I read in their booklet, once you stay after 13pm, the whole day has to be paid for, and for SOS International it was a cheaper option than to transfer us to Singapore!. And of course you cannot do anything as you are really stuck and tied up to their conditions. Even after transforming into the exorcist wife and indicating if they leave us here my man will for sure die!. Rules and procedures must be followed.
Finally and after seeing clearly that pumping my husband with thousands of bottles of antibiotics and performing wrong operations without anesthetics, we were sent a doctor from singapore with a nurse, to transfer us to Kuala Lumpur in a small ambulance plane. And it was like sending us an angel, when I saw how effective he was and how secure he mades us feel, I finally realised this nightmare is soon to be over. So so thankful for the Singapore team coming to rescue.
And indeed it was like night and day, we arrived to Kuala Lumpur and all is ready for us, and the ambulance while passing through the streets of Kuala Lumpur, of course there is traffic as well but the difference with Bali was that the cars actually moved as if we were the president car or a special correspondent from the White House, while in Bali the poor guy driving us was literally screaming his head off people through the loud speaker so they would make space for us to continue to the hospital.
All had to be repeated of course once in Pantai Hospital in KL and honestly at the beginning I also didn’t trust them at all (also first time in Malaysia) but I will be forever grateful to the whole staff and Indian Doctor there, that saved our lives from all this ordeal. Put a huge smile on my love and made us hopeful again for a positive future recovery. Of course we were not able to fly inmediately as my husband’s lungs were not strong enough but it was nice to see that each day he was getting better and better. And also there was a plan, questions answered and a professional follow up.
And now we are back home to The Netherlands with follow up from hospital in our area and still following treatment. But my lesson and my advice to all of you is that make sure that the place you are travelling to has a good health system. And this is my main complaint about Bali, it is an important destination and the island literally depends on tourism, I am sure they can invest in making a good health facility instead of transferring all the serious cases either to Singapore or Malaysia!.