Heart Attack in China - Travel to the United States
It was a bright sunny day and I was really excited to go to China to visit my cousins there, as I have not met them since ages. There was a kind of nervousness and anticipation of meeting my ancestor family in a small village 150 km from Shanghai. My flight was for about 19 hours with a halt in Hong Kong.
The plan was a self-guided tour of Suzhou and Tongli, spending the night in Suzhou. I took the train to Suzhou, then taxi off to Tongli for a morning of water-towing. Then back in a taxi to Suzhou and begin my tours of ancient Chinese gardens. Suzhou has the most beautiful collection of original old gardens in China and someday in all of Eastern Asia. Stay overnight in Suzhou, at the Holiday Inn there is central, and hit the Humble Administrators Garden upon opening. Then back to the hotel, check out and take the train back to Shanghai.
However, I never thought that this would turn into a nightmare for me.
As I neared Suzhou, that's the time I experienced mild chest discomfort which I thought was indigestion, and then the pain increased radiating to my left upper arm, and I was breathless. This was strange for I am a fit man.
I managed to catch the train to the nearest hospital where they took an ECG which showed ST T changes and my blood test Trop T came back positive.
I was admitted to an ICU. That was the time; I remembered my family back in the United States. I had no support.
I surfed the internet and found this service with its base in Hong Kong - HI Flying - Air Ambulance International.
My hospital bills were mounting, and I was in a familiar place.
I had free treatment and insurance back in the United States.
I contacted them. They responded immediately. I sent my medical report in Chinese, and they had an in-house Chinese translator to understand my clinical condition.
They immediately dispatched a Paramedic to meet me in the hospital.
They thought it was best to be transported by ground to Shanghai and a Commercial airlines stretcher with a doctor and nurse back home to New York.
All was planned in one day. They got medical clearance, and we were on the way back to the United States.
The Medical team was professional, and they were experienced.
They looked after my needs in all ways.
On reaching JFK Airport, they ground transported me to Sinai and I was under good care.
As facing a medical urgency while traveling to another country is a frightening experience. There can be language barriers, questionable medical care, delays in treatment, and also issues with insurance might lead to frustration for both the patients like me in that situation.
However, by God's grace - all went well.
I appreciate their caring professional staff who gave me incredible support throughout the journey including footing my hospital bill.
It is for three months and I have been discharged with a better health condition.
I thank the team of HI Flying for saving my life!