Before anyone reads the next sentence don't worry he's fine.
We had to take Aidan to A&E on Saturday night. He woke up with a nasty rash all over his face after his afternoon nap and we gave it some thought before deciding to go to the hospital, but thought it was for the best.
Now, we've taken him to the children's emergency ward before but in the UK. Here's a little comparison.
In London we called a cab and waited 15 minutes for it to arrive. In the US we called the insurance company and waited 15 minutes for them to give the go ahead and tell us which hospital to go to.
When we arrived at the hospital in the UK, children's A&E was very crowded but as Aidan was only a few weeks old we were ushered in to our own room. This wasn't as salubrious as it sounds as it was a cubicle that could have done with a lick of paint. In the US we registered, waited a few minutes while we filled in a few insurance forms and were then given our own room. Very nice it was too.
In the UK we saw a nurse then a junior doctor. In the US we saw two nurses, then a junior doctor then a senior practitioner - with a student doctor who'd come to 'check out the cute kid', then came the official who collected our insurance papers who told us our insurance company was very good as they had delivered all the necessary information by fax. (15 minutes well spent then).
In the UK Aidan was checked over, we were given some verbal advice and medicine to go home with but they couldn't conclusively say exactly what was wrong with him. In the US Aidan was checked over, we were given verbal and written advice to follow, some medicine but they couldn't conclusively say exactly what was wrong with him.
Just subtle differences apart from the state of the wards and ratio of staff to patients, I suppose.
This was taken two seconds after we'd got his hospital robe on. And it shows the general mood he was in with all the doctors and nurses who came to see him. His rash had got a lot better as we were going to the hospital but we just wanted to be on the safe side.