When my friend and I decided to go to Jamaica for a long weekend, being a patient at a local hospital was NOT on the itinerary. We both work full-time jobs, so we only had time for a three day weekend.  It’s easy for us to get to Jamaica, as we both have access to direct flights (I’m flying from Houston and she is flying from Philly).  I also wanted to try a relatively new hotel in Montego Bay, the Hyatt Zilara, so we decided to take advantage of our mutual free weekends and booked our trip.

The Hyatt Zilara Montego Bay

The Hospital in Jamaica?!

I generally don’t like to share a lot of personal stuff on my blog, but in order for readers to understand what happened, I’ll bite the bullet now. I suffer from chronic migraines, meaning that I have some kind of migraine daily.  Usually, I can stay ahead of it if I take my medications on time and they stay put. However, something like food poisoning can really make things go south for me. All it takes is one piece of questionable shrimp.

We arrived on Jamaica separately, my friend arriving first, so by the time I got there, it was nearing dinner time.  We chose to go to the ‘authentic Jamaican restaurant’ at the Hyatt Zilara.  The service was great, the food was pretty good, until we got to the shrimp.  The shrimp I ordered was covered in a spicy, red sauce, which covered up any smell that would have warned me that the shrimp would be a problem.  Once I took a bite, I could tell it wasn’t fresh, so I stopped eating it, but apparently not soon enough. Several hours later, I was seriously regretting my decision to ever come back to Jamaica, order shrimp, or even wake up that day.

Where it all began – the “Authentic Jamaican Restaurant” at the Hyatt Zilara Montego Bay

All Night Long

I’ll  spare you the details, but let’s just say that I was feeling terrible about keeping my neighbors up all night with me. And those medications that I need to keep my migraines under control?  Yep, those were long gone.  So was any chance of being hydrated, which also contributes to my migraines.  Once I pass a certain point, my only option is to get myself to a hospital to get rehydrated and pain medication by IV since nothing was staying down.  But I was in Jamaica….

The Following Morning

After my night of pure agony, I was finally able to reach my friend to tell her what was going on.  She contacted the medical staff at the Hyatt and they quickly sent a nurse to my room.  She was unable to directly help me but arranged to have someone take me to the hospital and called ahead to let them know I was coming.

So, I walked my sad, pukey and pale self down to the lobby to wait for our transportation.  I didn’t have to wait long before he showed up to drive us about five minutes to the Hospiten Montego Bay.  This was a Friday morning and there was one other person in the ER, but he was leaving.  The staff quickly got my information from us and took me back to a room.

My Experience at Hospiten Montego Bay

The nurses and doctor that took care of me while I was at the hospital could not have been more lovely.  Aside from not being able to get an IV in me because of my tiny, dehydrated veins, they were able to bring my migraine back down from the skull crushing pain I had and give me something to calm my poor stomach.  I could then down some really nasty drink full of electrolytes.  I was probably at the hospital a total of three hours, which really wasn’t bad, all things considered. While the hospital did not take my medical insurance, they gave me the proper paperwork that will allow me to file with my insurance company back home.

Conclusion

I don’t want anyone to think I am bashing the Hyatt Zilara.  While I am 95% sure it was that shrimp, I can’t be completely sure. The staff at the hotel took very good care of me, getting me to the hospital and checking on me when I returned.  While it was not fun while it was happening, I really did feel that they were concerned about my well being.  Once I was back from the hospital and got some actual food to stay put, we continued with our trip, which I will review in my next blog post.

So, what’s the worst thing that has ever happened to you during your travels?  Or do you also deal with a chronic medical condition?

That Time I Ended Up In a Jamaican Hospital