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Hospital Tech This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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The hospital was busy, as usual. It was eight and the hospital doors were shut for the night. The patients were in rooms, awaiting doctors. The treatment area was buzzing with technicians hurrying to finish the close-out list and check on all the patients. I was on my way to deal with the mountains of laundry when I was stopped by a technician with a beseeching smile on her face.

“If you’re not too busy, do you think you could wash the surgery packs? I don’t want to be here until 10,” she begged. I stood there washing what looked like hundreds of surgery utensils. I knew I had to budget my time; at eight I had to make sure all the blood was ready to be sent to the lab, and there were still a few samples in the centrifuge.

Through the hallway doors walked a gorgeous pit bull terrier mix. Her amber-gray eyes darted in confusion at the faces that cooed over her pink puppy features. She was fawn-colored with a bubble-gum nose. I could see she was in pain and you could feel the fever running through her body. Her floppy ears were cold.

I went to the front desk and grabbed the last files for the blood work, quickly filling out forms and sorting the blood in the fridge. One of the technicians approached, carrying a culture tube that I knew needed to be sent out as well, which frustrated me because the man who picks up the blood would be arriving soon.

The puppy was sedated and brought into surgery where the vet would perform a quick surgery on her left knee so she would be in less pain. I nervously checked the clock and called through the swinging surgery doors, “Doctor, are you sending any blood work out on the puppy?”

“Yes, can you please set up some fluids for her?” the doctor requested. “She is staying overnight.” Finding a fluid pump, I ran to hook up the puppy. I opened the cabinet where the fluids were kept and looked in shock – empty! I raced to the basement in search of extra boxes but found none. This had never happened before. This was a hospital – weren’t we supposed to be ready for the unexpected? On my way back, I checked every ward and found two bags. I breathed a sigh of relief, as the doctor expressed disbelief that we could have run out.

“Do you want me to get the paperwork for the culture?” I asked.

“Yes, bring it here and when I’m finished I’ll fill that out … hopefully before the blood is picked up.”

Nine o’clock came and went, and I nearly panicked. The man who picked up the blood was never this late. He should be here any moment, and the doctor really wanted the poor puppy’s culture to be sent to the lab. The sooner it was, the sooner she would get better.

It felt like forever, but the doctor finally finished surgery and handed me everything. Now that that was taken care of, I rushed to take the blood outside for pickup. As soon as I stepped outside, the man walked briskly around the corner.

“How many today?” he huffed.

“Twenty-three.”

Back inside, I returned the box to the fridge and breathed a big sigh of relief.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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pinksage33 said...
Jun. 30, 2009 at 3:57 pm
This is Good.
 
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