There is nothing like an unexpected stay in hospital to refresh the memory about life's priorities, number one being health.
My own recent two-night stay at Burnaby Hospital also reminded me how grateful I should be - and am - for the skill and compassion of our doctors, nurses, and support staff.
Thank you, Burnaby Hospital for the excellent care I received.
Your people work wonders every day in very challenging circumstances.
As my need for treatment was partly due to having neglected my own health, so it seems to be at Burnaby Hospital.
My stay showed me firsthand how neglect has created a need for emergency treatment there as well.
The wear and tear of time, chronic , and the rising tide of population over the past three decades have resulted in an overcrowded facility well past its best before date.
I waited six hours for a bed in emergency and spent the second night in a broken bed in the hall of a ward. Not exactly the best in health care for the best place on earth.
Yes, plans are underway to build a new hospital. In fact, a redevelopment plan had been drafted as far back as 2001.
But other priorities received funding : the Olympic Games, the Canada Line, the refurbishment of B.C. Place - ambitious, possibly even laudable projects, but hardly priorities compared to a hospital known to be in failing health.
God forbid any of the funding powers that be should need treatment at any facility for any reason. But spending a couple of nights in Burnaby Hospital might prove to be instructive.
The experience could serve to remind them of their responsibilities to put their constituents' priorities first when they make major funding decisions.
Patrick Cotter, by email