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14 April 2015

How to Go From Naxos to Athens - With a Broken Leg

It's actually quite well organized

Last January I broke my leg (I guess I've mentioned it before). This happened on the island of Naxos, in fact somewhere in the mountains of that island, but that is another story. At some point in that story I had arrived in the "health center" of the island, what used to be the islands hospital. The orthopedic there spoke that I would need surgery, which could only be done in Athens. Which means I had to get to Athens...

So what they do is put you on the ferry boat (unless things are really urgent and you get a helicopter ride, in which case you probably won't be in a state to enjoy that ride). They put you in an ambulance, which drives you to the port, right before the ferry boat is going to leave. Then you are either carried in on a stretcher or put in a wheelchair (stretcher for me), and placed in a cabin. On the Blue Star Ferries they have two "wheelchair compatible" cabins, which they use for this purpose. You have to buy the passenger ticket in advance and the cabin price you pay at the reception on the boat. In my case I would be supposedly be able to get the cabin money from the health insurance, but I haven't bothered.

Usually the local health center is supposed to phone the ship company that you're coming. With me they didn't bother, but apparently that was no problem at all.

In my case, one of the junior doctors was going to Athens too, so I had a doctor nearby. I didn't need him and having a doctor sent with you is definitely not standard procedure for such a simple case. You definitely will need someone to be there with you. Especially when you're in a state like mine, unable to get up and get something to drink from the cafeteria. (See also my previous post (in German) about Greek hospitals... you always need someone with you.)

Before you arrive in Pireaus, "the captain" will phone and get another ambulance for you. I assume it's not the captain himself, but that's the way they say it. The ambulance comes again to pick you up from the port and gets you to the hospital that is taking emergencies for whatever you have on that day.

In my experience, the system worked quite well. It was really a matter of "lean back and let them do their job", which they did without any problems. Ofcoz as soon as I arrived in the hospital, the paperwork started to rear its head again. But that is definitely not a story I want to get in at all.

Posted by betabug at 12:29 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
ch athens
Life in Athens (Greece) for a foreigner from the other side of the mountains. And with an interest in digital life and the feeling of change in a big city. Multilingual English - German - Greek.
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