Istituto Clinico Mater Domini, Castellanza Varese Italy ~ Romancing Italy
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Feb 20, 2009

Istituto Clinico Mater Domini, Castellanza Varese Italy

An Italian hospital run in Kaiser fashion. You pay a small fee for the service that you need (22 euro) but I am not sure if different services cost more or less.

Italians standing politely in line?

I believe some places in Italy are more notorious than others for not waiting in line. In order to diffuse a push-come-to-shove situation, conveniently situated near the entrance is a little machine that feeds you a number. Post offices also follow this system, as does the meat and cheese section of supermarkets.

Also in Post Office or bank style there were various kiosks or windows with an employee waiting to help the next number.

Ticket duly taken, I settled into a chair in the waiting area to wait for our number to pop up on the digital screen. However, I believe old habits die hard...even though there was nothing to be done until your number was called, 90% of the patients chose to hover near the entrance to the kiosks, as if they were at the starting line for a race. Even A moved toward the "beginning" of the line so he could wait for his number.

How to not get lost

A flash-back to an experience I had at Kaiser in California. I checked in at the appropriate registration and was given directions to the office where I would have my visit. They went something like this, "Go down this hall and turn right. Exit through glass doors and go to the middle building. Follow the corridor and take the elevator to the first floor."

I got lost. The directions seemed straightforward, until I saw there are two buildings in the middle and there is suddenly doubt which one is yours. And was I supposed to turn right or left?

Well, perhaps they need this little addition to their layout:



Directions that can be quickly forgotten in the anxiety of being at a hospital for a visit, can be minimized to a mere color and which floor. We were green.



We also had to go down a floor. The green line turned into the elevator, or continued to the stairs. Naturally, we took the elevator. If you had any doubts if you were in the right place....



Even the elevator was in the color you needed.

On the way out, I saw this mural and had to take a photo. I could have been back in the States after all.

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