The few times I was in a public Chinese hospital in China, I saw the saline drip procedures being carried out rather commonly in public waiting corridors, hallways, and patient waiting rooms. The age of the patients or potential patents varied. Some were youngsters, some were adults.
They were not inpatients for sure, because they were not wearing patient garbs, or home brought pajamas, they were just out patients waiting to be seen or treated by a physician.
I understand that before most surgeries, saline is administered to prevent dehydration, since saline is a neutral fluid, and not a medication, it sometimes is used to compensate for minor fluid or blood lost during surgery. For major surgeries, of course it requires blood transfusions.
The thing I saw baffled me. I actually saw a young lad no older than ten had a medical valve-lock inserted in his right wrist vein in a super market check out. The bandage held the drip valve on the lad’s wrist looked soiled, probably been on it for a few days.
I commented to my shopping companion. His response was, his parents probably did it with the following intentions: Their hospital physician probably advice them it might be prudent to leave the valve-lock in place, instead of have it removed once the medical requirement is resolved.
The sales pitch is,” You never know when the kid might need it again!” Saline drip is like any other medical procedures or medication dispensed in any Chinese hospitals these days. They are users pay, and users pay first, before treatment is received.
So the parents whom I saw in the supermarket check out probably figured it is more efficient and economical to leave the valve/lock in place with the lad’s vein. But somebody forget to tell them that there might be a very good chance of getting skin infection, and not all mechanical devices are fail proof. There might be a remote chance of the air lock being bummed open. If air leaks into a person’s blood stream via the leaky device, there will be dire consequences.
Kids are kids. They don’t know any better. What about us adults? What do we do to protect our precious little ones?