I frequently read or hear down in the Bay Area that Lake County is a third rate, sloppy place. They are fools.
An old friend who admires the beauty up here would like to move up, but based on what she has read, fears losing effective health care if she comes here. She has been misled.
Last week we went down to the San Jose for a few days where I caught a bug in my lungs that was so awful that I thought I was going to stop breathing before I got home.
My doctor, Dr. Parsons, who runs a great office In Kelseyville, gave my chest one touch with his stethoscope and shagged me off to emergency at Sutter Lakeside Hospital in Lakeport.
At the emergency window, I was given only time to state my name and problem, and was immediately going through some triage process.
Within minutes I was trussed up in bed in the Intensive Care Unit somewhat like in a scene from the movie, “Warhorse” with lights flashing and bells bonging.
I was there for three days. Obviously I survived; in fact I now feel great.
At first, I was somewhat unnerved by donning a backwards gown which doesn’t always hide all your parts. Later I realized that those professional nurses view the private parts of an old man like me with about the same excitement that a mechanic views an engine block.
I was thoroughly impressed by the excellent treatment I received. Doctors, like those who treated me, Dr. Petrorius and Dr. Oliver, come there from all over the state.
But I was especially impressed by the nurses, Cheryl Shaffer, Tami Renfro-Meyers and Carol Bise who run the ICU. My room was straight across from the nurses’ station and I was able to observe their performance continually.
They work very long hours in stressful conditions but respond to sudden needs with alertness, kindness and professionalism. I left there feeling they were hard-working, kindly angels.
As for the opinion of those fool writers in the Bay Area, I’m happy with our medical care in Lake County – especially if they’ll keep their horrible bugs home with them.
Randy Ridgel lives in Kelseyville, Calif.