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  • Elizabeth Eaman

Horses & Healthcare: 5 days in the life


The last five days have been eventful. I'm sore and exhausted and ready for more! Let us proceed in reverse chronological order.

Day 5

Today, I laid down flooring. I tore up the carpet and got things started with help from a good friend (who pretty much knew what he was doing, while I was happily winging it). I was able to get half the floor done before I had to come back for dog duty. I came home, let the beasts meet their needs, put my feet up and promptly fell asleep. I don't even remember closing my eyes. I woke a little while later and head back to finish the job.

Day 4

Sunday, after tending to the horses at the pre-crack-of-dawn, I drove our truck and horse trailer into the heart of downtown Seattle to pick up supplies for Oodle Family Medicine: Exam table, wall-mounted ophthalmoscope/otoscope, spirometer, EKG machine, scales (baby, toddler, adult), stadiometer, procedure supplies, nebulizer, lab equipment, gloves, gowns, linens, hand sanitizer, clock, privacy screen and much, much more.

Lesson's learned: A) Loading an exam table on a horse trailer is a lot harder than loading a horse! B) Keeping the flashers on for a 3-hour moving process will kill your battery. C) Draining your battery in front of a fire station makes finding a public servant to help you jump your car a lot easier.

After navigating out of the city with a crammed truck and packed trailer, I dragged my sore, I'm-too-old-for-this body to two separate home improvement stores to get the supplies needed to do today's flooring.

Day 3

Saturday was mostly a "me" day. Mostly. I ran around like a headless chicken getting the trailer fixed just in the nick of time to pick up all those clinic goodies. While repairs were being made, I enjoyed myself on a 4 hour ride on the lovely Taylor Mountain. In the evening I did some OodleMD.com site updates and sent my shiny, new patient agreement contract to those already pre-enrolled with me new practice.

Day 2

Day two was a a day for purging and paperwork. I ditched a carload of old horse things at a local consignment charity sale (and donated what didn't sell). Getting rid of the old things wasn't necessarily easy but felt great in the end!

The rest of the day I spent on the computer working on paperwork for Oodle. Very exciting. I finalized the patient contract, completed paperwork for WA Department of Health, created a list of Oodle Member Services, updated the HIPPA agreement for Oodle's website, and sent new business cards to print.

Day 1

All these days were wonderful, but this one was something special. I arrived at Seattle Center at 6:30 AM and I left with very sore feet and a huge smile at 6:15 PM. I've mentioned this event in a previous post. In short, it's a 4-day "pop-up" clinic. Medical, dental, vision care, are all provided absolutely free of cost. They have behavioral health, social work resources, ultrasound, lab, immunizations, X-ray, rapid HIV and HepC testing and more. It's an incredible feat and I felt lucky to be able to volunteer. I was told that Thursday is not quite as busy as the other days, but nonetheless the SKCC saw nearly 1200 patients! Pictured above is my exam room (a VIP suite in Key Arena). The floor and stools are covered in plastic, a bargain store pillow is available for comfort, and the whir of dental drills permeates the room despite the heavy velvet curtain barrier. It was a great experience and hopefully I'll be able to work even more days next year. Please, if you click on anything else today, take a moment to visit this site here, where you can read patient's own illustrated stories of the clinic experience.


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