I started this blog on 11 November 2013, the day Pádraig and I got ready to leave Ireland for Germany. Pádraig had been hit by 4.3-ton van on 27 June 2013, at around 10am, on Rt.6A, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA. He acquired a severe brain injury (ABI) and has been in a coma since, although showing sign of minimal consciousness. Following two and a half weeks in Cape Cod Hospital, Hyannis, an air ambulance had brought him to Dublin where he arrived on 15 July. Over the coming months, we became deeply immersed into Beaumont’s frontline. We learned, how the Irish health system is working at a time of cuts, scandals, and disillusionment at every level of care and therapy. We learned, how people with acquired brain injury are treated. After nearly four month in a six bedroom High Dependency Unit (HDU), with the prospect of remaining there for another nine months, until one of the three beds available in Ireland and suitable for Pádraig would become available in the National Rehabilitation Hospital (NRH) in Dun Laoghaire, we decided it was time to leave.
Everything in the blog is my own, very personal experience and opinion of what has been happening to us since that morning on 11 November 2013. But I think a lot of what has been happening to us is far from being unique. Therefore, I hope it will shed some light on how different health systems deal with ABI. I am usually writing the blog at the end of a long day of work and hospital visits, with a bit of driving and shopping thrown in. While I am trying, I am usually so tired that I find it impossible to re-read what I have written, I just fall asleep on top of the keyboard, so mistakes might slip in which, I hope, you will excuse.
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