Monday, December 12, 2011

Government Hospital Drama

My sister had to deal with the government hospital last week because of an emergency and unfortunately no medical insurance. Last Wednesday she had a really bad pain, she thought it was her appendix. She went to the ER of one of the government hospitals (not located in one of the richer areas of Kuwait). During her 8 hours in the ER the doctors tried to find the problem and in the end opted for exploratory surgery. The ER is segregated so the ward was full of women of various nationalities. My sister said the husband of one of the patients busted into the ward to confront the doctor. The women were trying to cover themselves and one lady finally yelled at the guy to get out.

The next day I went to visit her in the maternity ward where they kept her. I was schocked at the condition of the room. Everything in the room was so old and out of date. The beds have 1 blanket, 1 sheet and 1 pillow and that's it. The items are rationed and you can't get anything extra. The curtains had blood stains on them and the walls had graffiti on them. The bathroom was unbelievable and I couldn't imagine having to stay overnight in that place. There was no television, thank goodness for iPhones and internet.

Yesterday my sister came home and told me the horror stories she witnessed during her four days there. One young pregnant Kuwaiti female was admitted because her water was leaking. The doctor told her she would have to stay in the bed for 5 months, the doctor then told her she didn't have to stay in the bed if she got an abortion. After giving the girl pills she began to bleed and no one would help her. She asked my sister for the garbage can and when my sister opened the curtain she saw blood everywhere, she had to step outside because of the smell.

The next day they sent the girl home and when the nurses cleaned the bed there was blood under the mattress, I hope they threw it away. There were three more Kuwaiti women who came and went. Two of them had "extractions." The other girl was given the abortion pill because there was something wrong with her baby. She then started screaming that the fetus was coming out. She looked between her legs and said in Arabic "that's my son". After it was over she asked the nurse not to throw the fetus away as she wanted to bury it.

My sister said they put the body in a bag and tossed it on the bed beside her head as they wheeled her out. My sister said she was traumatized by all the abortions and extractions and the attitudes of the women, no emotion or crying. I'm so glad I have insurance.

Grafitti on the wall...
Manual lift bed.....

Hallway of the maternity ward...

The bathroom of the ward.....


There were only four bathrooms for the whole floor, 2 toilets and 2 holes in the ground. No toilet paper or paper towels, we had to bring those for my sister to use. One bar of soap for everyone to use, not very sterile. There were 3 shower stalls in some nasty looking room, I wouldn't dare touch the floor with my feet.

I must say the hospital is undergoing some upgrades but in the meantime this is what free medical coverage in Kuwait is. The rich people don't see these issues as they can afford to go to private hospitals or travel abroad for their needs. Of course if there is a special case and you have "wasta" you can have medical abroad and the government pays for it. I keep reading about the "cradle to grave" free medical Kuwaiti citizens get, if you use the free medical you may see the grave sooner than you think. Just sayin'


  1. the chest hospital and cancer hospital are top notch though
    murbarak, adan, sabah, all stink
    my kids have braces through the govt dental clinic - dentist is top notch
    govt hospitals are what you pay for though mostly
    did you sister have an entopic pregancy?

  2. I hope your sister is better now,inshalah but I must ask is it legal to have abortions for q8s I'm stunned what a lack of humanity and clean healthcare... I read your blogs all the time and I read about rapes,domestics violence ,,cruel treatment for workers ,stabbings... wow

  3. which hospital is this? al adan?

  4. My sister is better Alhumdulilah, she didn't have anything related to pregnancy, something to do with a twisted overy but they had her recovering in the maternity ward. I know there are specialty hospitals that are really nice and some of the new clinics are nice also, but some of the staff are not very bright in the clinics. They didn't know that my daughter had an abcess instead they put some ointment on it and sent us home. She was later admitted to Mowasat for surgery on her leg.

    Is it wrong to think that Kuwaiti citizens should have their own hospitals? The medical system has been abused by people who come to Kuwait on a visitor visa from other countries to use up the free medical then they go back home. Everyone has to pay for medical when they get their residencies, so where does the money go? It probably goes into some corrupt officials pocket as most of the alotted money does. They do the minimal for the hospitals and the rest disappears.

  5. I really don't understand this talk about foreigners coming here for free medical. As you yourself witnessed, the free service here is pathetic. Who, in their right mind will pay for their flight and stay to have this service? People who live here go back to their homeland for serious medical ailments rather than risk the allegedly "free" service for which they pay insurance.
    There is a whole bunch of foreigners here who pay medical insurance every year and do not avail of service worth 1 KD.

    And also for your info, no major treatment or medicines or services worth major amount is given to any visitor. Those kind of "major" treatments are reserved for privileged patients only. For eg. try to get a dialysis done here in Kuwait. The doctor will advice you the booking is too long and go home or private.


Comments are welcome! Personal attacks are not. Thanks!