Bottomline:Do you befit my son dead? Not concerned, not caring. You are an organization which fails even to call back customers with pertinent issues
Its a Monday night facing certain death.Fatigued, sweaty and panting right after enjoying a nice meal; but which is swiftly discharged off the stomach with aplomb.
My mother is tensed as I am stretched away in the brown vinyl couch inside living room. I am in some rather queer and sordid state. To this end, mother asks me of the possibility of her accompanying my ailing self to seek the trusted assistance of a physician.
I ultimately manage to entice her to buy my logic, arguing that the extent to which my stomach did hurt could ostensibly make survive my life. At least for this one night. All assertions are ratified thus my mum is convinced. But we are to rise by 6 AM the following morning which turned out to be an unbearably hotter day than its previous night.
Privy, we sip copious amounts of beverages accompanied by tasty cookies my girlfriend had purchased specifically and conveniently for the peculiarly sick me. Our return travel to Mombasa, our home area is a pulsating daunting affair. I hardly can consume whatever sort of edible material in a much simpler process of ingestion.
My mum confident that she has a solution. She is to turn to the accustomed aid of her health insurance scheme which she refers to as her number one listening and caring health partner amid millions of all sorts of a general wider scale of insurance providers.
A.O.N – a global professional service firm headquartered in London, though locally they operate as MINET . This is her most precise guess, her ultimate pick. She rests on to this mega rich company forgoing other market viable relevant giants the likes of N.H.I.F (National Health Insurance Fund) the national provider. We are well prepared to leave for hospital. In time, we have managed to tank down some arguably bulky amounts of beverages (cappuccino) with a kilo of wowing cookies fetched from Paul’s Bakery, Eldoret, down the prominent ‘gullet’ presumably; any other lad will think we are having a mother – son moment enjoying an exquisite local, pre – Christmas sojourn.
We are to arrive at the calm, spotlessly clean Bliss Hospital, Mtwapa; which is placed mellifluously adjacent to Bahnoff bar – the two being almost 4 blocks apart. Strictly adhering to stone – face protocol, the receptionists ask my mum of her T.S.C number as credentials for logging into the hospital’s databases. This is to say MARGARITA SIDI- as her national ID concurs, would in few minutes know whether I’m insured or not. They try to find me within their databases but I am incognito. Only my mother and father appear to be the benefactors of the insurance.
The aforementioned conundrum seems to be one short – lived affair with one amidst the two receptionists (female), whose confronting lipstick has a color matching with her skin tone; revealed by the long cleavage exposed through her dipped-collar black, laced dress. The young almost flawless light skinned lady offers me a friendly procedure that would enable me register my name as one amongst a list of 3 beneficiaries of my ever concerned mother’s health insurance plan.
I helped my solemn parental raiser have my name registered,her son ready to see the doctor in time. But then again, our effort proves to be awe detrimental; hitting a snag as we aren’t fruitful. Our hopeless push to see my sick self, diagnosed and treated are all but surprisingly futile.
A helpline: ‘0730604000’ is whatever number that prevails throughout mom’s phone call history; at least spanning the duration from the recent past, the past few hours. This number has had itself savagely redialed for cumulatively 5 times. As my mother spoke over the line, the receptionists seem as if to be constantly switching calls. Everybody has begun to notice we are persistent yet no one wishes to confront us.
“We are logging him into the system. Kindly wait for a few minutes as we confirm. The network could also be coupled up with interference to inhibit effective buffering and upload of his attached particulars and credentials,” reiterates the A.O.N customer service desk via a telephone conversation.
We are awfully distressed. I am uncomfortable, my mum fatigued and relentlessly tormented by hunger.
Call after call, until we couldn’t call all anymore. We have exhausted airtime that could potentially facilitate cringe communication with the insurance of a company.
We terrifyingly becry on Bob call for more – can’t we simply call more? For less? Safaricom is present to unleash predicaments atop our current transfixing situation.
“I’ve been directed by your fellow female colleague to wait for a period of 30 minutes. You now introduce yourself to me as Michael Okumu confidently alluding to patience on my side. Me and my already irked son. My boy is seriously ill as things stand, I have no other means of assisting him but this A.O.N of yours. I am trying cautiously to save some life here yet you all perceive me to be a joker. It appears as an unscrupulous, queer joke to you. You are busy sweet talking the mind of a 50 year old mom; some grotesque, robot – zombie kind of words that do not elucidate anything whatsoever. Not even a meager ounce of lay sense at all!” My mother blurts out, now raged with clinical temperament.
We have to scratch more and more rechargeable airtime cards. We must be making the richest telecommunications company in Kenya even richer and grossly wealthier. My mother has scolded the guy from the other end of the line thus he bluntly hangs up.
From an up close point of view, my mother realizes that the wise build bridges while fools build barriers. At this point, she trusts not a single soul on earth. Heeding to Sophocles utterances “trust dies but mistrust blossoms” she decides that the next phone call shall not be ceremonious. Same tone, same tempo with same kind of vocal punch.
“Should it relate to you guys that I don’t want the nightmare of having to deal with the my child’s death in an unceremonious patients’ line. I have been in hospital right from 9 AM, calling your helpline seems not to have been an apt bargain as you continue promising and assuring that you have looked into the matter. Should you keep me here?
Do you befit my son dead? Not concerned, not caring. You are an organization which fails even to call back customers with pertinent issues. Ksh. 500 of airtime has duly been wasted. No help yielded, no intervention lobbied for. Nothing still. This is so bad and pathetic from your shambolic entity of an organization. Very unorthodox when dealing with clients.” Mother laments to a rather frustrated Mr. Okumu Michael, “Let me know; here and now – let me free so that I’m in position to seek some alternative medical aid as soon as possible for my son is still excruciating in nail – penetrating pain. Joseph Stalin shouldn’t be guiding you to ultimately throw the life of this young one; with his mantra that hypothesizes death as the solution to all problems – no man no problems,” affirms a sweaty and fatigued mum.
We are so unpredictable, improbable and steadfast. The hospital learns this. Albeit the aforementioned traits, we were also deemed as patient enough to wait for close to 8 hours inside the corridors of Bliss hospital, Mtwapa.
I have received medical attention now. Enough soon became enough. We surely did opt for another place, travelling further south in search of an even better Oasis Health Facility in Shariani zone; Mtwapa – Kikambala.
I am diagnosed with moderate ulcers that were slowly becoming acute. Two infections have also got the better part of my stomach’s intestinal matrix. Catoxymag – N, pantoprazolle 40 mgs and some multivit tabs is the medication I am offered and some good doctor – patient advice on matters nutrition and dietetics. I’m currently on medication.
I came to myself within a dark wood where the straight way was lost and the direct route strictly meandered.