New Year’s Day In The Hospital

January 1, Day 519
Sick again. That’s it. I shall not start a New Year sick! I am determined to end this. I feel a little better than yesterday but I’ve come to the conclusion that while I don’t love taking pharmaceuticals, sometimes you need them or you won’t get better. Today is one of those days.

Text the guy who is leading the group hike to the top of Table Mountain today and tell him I’m sorry, I’m headed to the hospital today and cannot do the hike. He says no problem, I can always give him a call if I ever come back to Cape Town and I can join his hiking group then.

Get up and find the phone number for the Peace Corps medical office in Botswana, but I don’t have a phone to call them since my Bots SIM card doesn’t work in South Africa. So, I text them that I need medical assistance.

Immediately, Dr. Shava calls me. I tell him I’ve been sick for a week and he also agrees that there is no way this is food poisoning. He gives me the name and phone number of the Peace Corps doctor in South Africa and tells me I can call her on Wi-Fi.

Call the doctor, she is extremely helpful. All of the pharmacies are closed today, so she says I must go to the private hospital. South Africa has public healthcare, but also offers private hospitals/doctors/pharmacies where you can pay and supposedly receive better quality care. The doctor tells me that I should pay for everything at the private hospital and then the Peace Corps will reimburse me.

She thinks I could have hepatitis, salmonella, E coli or malaria. I tell her that while I do live below the malaria line, I did visit the village of Hereford a few weeks ago that had a case of malaria though it’s below the malaria line.

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