I woke up today at about 7:30am shivering in my bed. I felt terrible with a fever, chills, a headache, and achy joints. It felt like to flu. Of course there’s no way I could get the flu because I got a flu shot in the States before I left, right? There I was shivering and feeling terrible faced with the dilemma of going to class. If we miss class, we lose two points off of our final grade and on top of that I had a quiz scheduled for that day in my Modern Standard Arabic class. I decided to suck it up and went to class regardless of how I felt.
Once I was there I talked to my professor and explained I was sick. In response she decided to give us the quiz first thing so I could leave early. I’m sure I did terribly on the quiz because I simply couldn’t concentrate on anything. After I finished I left class and headed to the Khalifeh Building where the CIEE office is located so I could fill out an absence form. I felt like I was on a death march it took so long.
Once I was there and filling out a form the Director of the Program walked in the door and informed me I didn’t look too good (really?). She told me to talk to Jennifer who handles our dealings with doctors among many other things. Jennifer came to talk to me and proclaimed that I looked terrible (really?) and that I should go to the doctor. Actually she decided that I should go to the emergency room since most Jordanian doctors don’t get into their offices until 11am (sounds like a nice gig). She had one of the CIEE drivers take me to the Arab Medical center near the 5th circle.
Upon my arrival to the hospital I went to the triage area and described to them my ailments. I was told to wait in the examination room and that the doctor would be there in a couple minutes (everything in Jordan is 2 or 5 minutes which can mean anywhere from 2 minutes to never). A nurse (a male nurse of course) came in and took my vitals. To this point it was just like being in a hospital back home but without having a long wait in the ER. The doctor arrived and gave me a routine check up. He told me (he spoke spotless English) my tonsils looked good and there didn’t appear to be anything caused by bacteria. The diagnosis: viral flu. Apparently US flu shots don’t cover all types of flu. He prescribed me some Panadol (Tylenol), some cough syrup (wasn’t coughing but ok), and a third pill which I’m not sure what it’s for (Xyzal). After all of this I had to pay the staggering amount of 12 Jordanian Dinars for my emergency room trip and 17 Dinars for my medications. That’s about $40 and some change. Take that US healthcare.