Umbrella Revolution Wall 2014

Umbrella Revolution Wall 2014
Admiralty, Umbrella Revolution 2014

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Mele Kalikimaka

Merry Christmas in Hawaiian--Season's Greetings to All. Happy New Year. It's another year in Mui Wo coming to an end. Life in our sleepy village on the South China Sea is what it is...the herd of cattle now has three new calves, Keohi has now morphed into Ironman/Hulk/ Ninja, and there are three new ugly lampposts by the ferry pier that will wreck the view of the water, but such is life in this part of the world...wonder, industrial waste, subtropical green, the steam of fishballs, and the clicking of bikes speeding down a brick path...


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Get checked...life or death

Thought I'd post this public service announcement. Women need to get mammograms after the age of 40 every year, and if breast cancer runs in the family, every year from age 35. Self-check is possible, but the mammogram is important.

I had this done at the Prince's Building. I recommend this place. I've had quite a few mammograms as breast cancer does run in the family, and my age, and find the Prince's Building service and technician very good. OK, it doesn't look like the Tucson Breast Center--no pink curtains and magazines and clean slick dressing rooms. But frankly speaking, the people did a better job, and there was less hassle.

For those who cannot afford it, you can get a referral through the public health clinics here in HK and they will refer you to a specialist who will in turn refer you to someone to help you to get this done. It's a little more hassle, but is very inexpensive compared to many places.

While on the subject I must raise my opinion here about standard habits and ideas about gynecological issues here in HK:

Let me be frank:

---First of all the dearth of female practitioners is nothing short of astounding. I've never had a male gynecologist in all of my years of getting checked in the US, and while I know gender does not matter, some like to have a doctor with the same physiology. That said, it is not entirely necessary, but the fact that you have to seriously HUNT AROUND in HK to find a female gynecologist says a lot about the status of women, and healthcare for women in Asia's World City....

You can guess where I am going here...

---People need to get a pap smear every year. Or close to every year.

Now I heard this from another woman about the UK and the healthcare system which is obviously great--but under stress, that standard practice is only every 3 years, on average. This is too long. Get checked every year. There's a lot that can change within 3 years. Understand that a public health system may be under duress. 3 years is not bad, but 3 years is a little too long if you want to stay on top of it.

---To dispel some archaic ideas out there--I know they exist. I know they exist because we're here in HK and I had a gynecological nightmare experience here in 2002 (enough to put any sane woman off of getting a pap, but I had to remind myself that this was HK and therefore this is why this happened).
If you don't like your gynecologist--WALK AWAY. That's right. You don't have to have someone you do not get along with poking around in your vaginal area. Simply dress, walk out and get another appointment with a doctor you like. If you feel uncomfortable, RAISE THIS ISSUE. Your doctor should accommodate. If not, same as above. Get dressed and walk out. YOU ARE IN CHARGE. You're the patient.

Check-ups and pap smears and the like have nothing to do with sexual promiscuity, sexual proclivities, or anything like that. It's simply basic healthcare. Take care of yourself. Take care of your family by getting yourself checked out.

Let's be real, women. If you can pony up for a facial a few times a year, drag yourself to a hair salon and get your nails done, you can get your mammogram and pap smear. It can be a matter of life or death!