Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Germany's medicine as it's best (or worst)

Before we left Pittsburgh, Andrei had occupation therapy where he worked a lot on his handwriting and other related services and he progressed really well but still had work to do.  His handwriting is pretty awful to begin with and it really matters here in Germany as the kids get older to have nice legible cursive.  The German pediatrician gave us a referral and told us about a center that should provide those services and after it took me forever to fill out tons of forms, we finally had an appointment back in August.  Two days before the scheduled appointment we got a phone call stating that the person we need to see is on sick leave until October and there is nobody else that we can talk to (apparently).  Ok, kind of pretty frustrated but I reschedule for October (keep in mind that I originally called them in the spring).  So we finally went and the first time, we met with the person and she gave us many more forms to fill out and told us to come back 4 weeks later while she reads over our American reports to see what kind of services that can match us up with.   We came back 4 weeks later (in November) and she is telling me that there is nothing they can do for Andrei and gives me another center to call!  A while back I summoned all my German knowledge and called this new center which send me a lot more paperwork to fill out and here we are nearly – another spring is here – and we still can’t get certain things in place.  The good news is that we kind of figured out some stuff on our own and we are currently working on Andrei’s handwriting ourselves nearly every day.  On the other hand, I’ve also realized that it’s kind of important to have your “i’s dotted and t’s crossed” when it comes to bureaucracy here; therefore, I am still trying to get an appointment for that center.  Maybe sometime before 2017?!?

Another little Anecdote dealing with medicine in Germany – all 3 boys have been sick last week with temperature going up to 40C (104F) – really high in my book!  Ilya was the first one so I took him to a doctor on Monday and was told that it’s just a virus, no medicine necessary besides ibuprofen to keep him comfortable.  On Wednesday, Anton got send home from kindergarten with temperature so I assumed it was the same thing.  However, Thursday morning he started complaining on his ear hurting.  Back to the doctor we go because I am thinking ear infection.  Here is where it gets interesting – doc looked at his ears, said they were both a bit red but at this point he still doesn’t think Anton needs antibiotics.  I am told to come back on Friday for a check up which I did and apparently the ears got better by themselves, without antibiotics.   Three times at pediatricians office in one week – I believe that might be a record for me.  Andrei thankfully had the shortest bout lasting only 3 days and the least miserable.  

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