Life on the Oregon Frontier may include the occasional visit to the hospital. On August 20 I paid a visit to the St. Charles Medical Center in Bend, Oregon which lies 150 miles west of the Lazy J ranch. The purpose of the visit was total hip replacement surgery performed by Dr. Michael Caravelli and his surgical team. Included in the team was anesthesiologist, physician assistant, scrub nurse and someone who managed all the tools.
A week before the operation I met with a physician assistant in Dr. Caravelli’s office as well as his assistant. There were the usual X-rays, blood work, and other evaluations necessary before major surgery and a visit to my doctor in Burns who helped arrange for some of the tests like chest x-ray and EKG. There’s a huge cadre of people needed to make an operation like this happen. My experience with all of the people involved was pleasant and efficiency was the word of the day.
|Dr. Michael Caravelli|
In the recovery room the Nurse Ruth was very businesslike. I on the other hand was very chatty, chirpy and singing which was a little unusual for me. I had had a spinal block and light sleep for the surgery and a various times could hear banging, clanging and whirring but it didn’t register. I could care less what was happening. The surgery started at 2 PM, I was in recovery by 4 PM and by 5 PM I was in my room. I had a light salad for dinner. The nurse had me sitting on the edge of the bed that evening.
The next day I was up and walking in the room, then down the hall in the afternoon. I discussed my body functions with more people in three days than I have in a life time. And for some reason, maybe the pain meds, I would not shut up. Anyone who came in the room was fair game. I had my own room on the Ortho/Neuro floor with TV which I didn’t watch but there were two music channels with lovely, soothing music to listen to. When I wasn’t having meds administered, vital signs checked, physical therapy, occupational therapy, meals, visits, and phone calls, I’d nod off.
|Donna, RN, and Julie, CNA|
The hospital experience itself was exceptional. I loved being waited on. Three shifts of RNs, CNAs, PTs, OTs and more attended to the needs of the patients on their floor.The food was spectacular. It was healthy! Even vegans would be pleased. I ordered what I wanted from a room menu and it was delivered anytime I wanted it between 6:00 AM and midnight. (Not like the old days where tray of questionable food came only at specified times.)
|Kelly, Physical Therapist|
|Beth, Day RN|
St. Charles is well laid out and easy to navigate. Volunteers help if a visitor becomes lost. There’s a deli and a cafeteria that serve wholesome food to visitors and staff. There an organic dish of the day in the cafeteria, a resplendent salad bar and healthy entrees. I was very impressed. My husband could find good food while he waited and there is also a beautiful chapel and airy garden space for visitors and staff. And I loved my hospital bed because it adjusted up and down so easily.
|Vince, Night RN|
|Laura, Floor Supervisor|
Everyone was kind, helpful and courteous from the admitting officers to the surgery team. Thank you Dr. Carvelli and crew and the folks at St. Charles Hospital for a positive experience. Recovery is in progress.
(I took lots more photos, which didn't come out because I was rather fuzzy at the time. And I hope I got everyone's name right.)