Baby didn’t deserve rough treatment

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Monday, May 12, 2014


WHEN Danny Deen and I roomed together during a “pro-democracy” convention at the Manila Hotel in 1986, we were confronted with a man-sized problem: the other’s snoring. So during the next four or five nights of the convention, Danny and I engaged in an undeclared but serious competition of who gets to sleep first. Danny won but barely.

Too bad, we didn’t know then that there is a simple but effective antidote to snoring.

I thought that Bob Gothong was joking when he told me that every night before he goes to bed, he seals his mouth with an adhesive, the kind that surgeons use to bind open wounds (after stitching them, of course).

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Bob swears that the home remedy has proven to be successful: he gets to sleep soundly, his heart has been on a rest mode nightly and, I imagine, Joy doesn’t have to cover her ears anymore to enjoy some quiet. I thus advise the men to go to the pharmacy ASAP before they get served legal separation papers for annoyance, if not cruelty.

Bob accidentally mentioned the tape cure while we were discussing the case of the infant, whose mouth a nurse allegedly taped to stop him from crying. Sun.Star Cebu has withheld the name of the hospital but since the other papers have identified it and in fairness to all the other hospitals in Cebu City, let me state that the alleged taping incident took place at the Cebu Maternity Hospital.

If I am not mistaken, the hospital is run by a charitable organization of women. It is a birthing place favored by average income families because it is comparatively inexpensive. It also has a solid reputation for a competent medical and allied services staff.

Now, that reputation has been sullied because a nurse thought that taping is the tender loving way to hush a child. So sad.

I expect the hospital administration to immediately conduct an investigation. I refuse to believe that sealing a baby’s lips is an old practice at Cebu Maternity. Our medical and health workers have proven themselves to be a wonderfully dedicated lot; they wouldn’t do anything that will compromise the oath that they have taken.

The parents couldn’t have made up the story. What for? What is there to be gained by them in falsely accusing the nurse? The baby’s father described their experience as “degrading” and “hurtful” because they thought that their son was in the “good hands of a professional establishment.” What they found out, he said in a post on Facebook,
was that “(t)hey handle your children like puppies out of a dog pound.”

You have one deeply hurt parent there, that is obvious. And who wouldn’t be hurt? The father (whom Frankahay Ta! listener Rainjet Quiamco identified as Rye Kido) has every reason to feel betrayed. The baby was in a nursery of a reputable hospital, for Christ’s sake, not in a blood bank run by Dracula!

What makes the situation really dreadful was that the nurse did not show any fear or apprehension when the baby’s mother made the startling discovery. On the contrary, she nonchalantly told the mom that her baby was noisy, implying that the poor innocent child, who had no means to defend himself, was deserving of the rough treatment.

And when the by now distraught mother asked the nurse to remove the tape, she had the temerity to tell the former to do it herself! What arrogance; what deplorable lack of Christian compassion!

The hospital management has promised to come up with an official statement today. I pray that when they do it, they only have the interest of the truth at heart, not the
intent to cover up and save themselves from legal consequences.

I am hopeful because the women, most of them anyway, who run the hospital are mothers.

(frank.otherside@yahoo.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 13, 2014.

Opinion

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