Checked in to the Aladdin and alll went smoothly. You have to watch the signs carefully or it is confusing the first time. Check in went smooth and polite. Our "Panaramic Suite" was a knockout. Plenty of room to get lost in. Wife lost a quick $100 in Wheel of Fortune slot, but made up for it later with a $200 spin. I did better downtown at Golden Nugget and Las Vegas Club.


I did encounter a severe sinus infection on the way in, and was referred to the HARMON MEDICAL CENTER 150 E Harmon, right behind the Aladdin. Showed up at 7:25 PM and was told to fill a few forms out pertaing to insurance, medical history etc. Asked the approx waiting time and was told "we are no allowed to estimate times". Called in very quickly for a quick vital sign check, and was shipped back to the waiting room. Several casino employees came and went while I waited, giving the apprearance that they were receiving a higher priority service. Waited around the waiting room 2 and a half hours and was never treated. Several persons in front of me walked out after getting tired of waiting. I also left and called my physician in St Louis would phoned in a prescription for me. I would never return to HARMON MEDICAL CENTER (HMC) for ANY reason. I'll find another Urgent Care Center or just go to an ER for the same price. I was not a happy camper wasting a night in their waiting room, and would strongly advise against anyone else doing the same.


Reply from J. Random Nurse Las Vegas, Nevada


I was working at Harmon Medical Center during the time that the fellow from St. Louis visited. Let me say that I do not speak for the staff or HMC as a corporation, but as a person who is also a nurse with five years of experience in Las Vegas in similar facilities.


Nobody likes to wait in pain for medical care. That said, after reading his description, the triage system functioned flawlessly. His vital signs were taken immediately, and he was apparently stable enough to wait, so he was sent back and triaged as lowest priority. 


At least once a night at HMC, nurses and doctors pump patients full of meds to stop them from dying from previously unknown allergies. It takes at least one professional by that person's bedside to monitor their condition until they are stable and may be discharged. These people are triaged first, because if we do not see them within minutes they will die. They eat up a lot of time and resources, but that's okay.


So, when we finally get around to seeing all the people triaged at the lowest level ("Severe sinus infection") they have had to wait awhile. All patients who are expected to live will wait their turn in the order they had their vital-signs taken. This means that the casino workers who are on contract and have insurance went to HMC earlier than the poster. Being on contract and having insurance means that HMC likely will not receive as much money for treating them. Financially, they would be placed at the end of the line, but it seems nurses and doctors and very offended by that idea, not to mention the patients. We don't care about the money, we care only about reducing suffering.


It's good that his doctor was willing to write a prescription and phone it in at 11pm to midnight (St. Louis time), for a condition that doctor had never seen. The poster is a very lucky man to have such a close relationship with his physician.


Personally, I don't go to see a doc unless I've been sick for at least two weeks, or unless I have a broken bone or the bleeding won't stop. :)


I'm sorry the poster did not enjoy HMC more. As an experienced nurse who has worked per diem at many different Las Vegas facilities and been a patient on both coasts more than a few times, I can attest to HMC's high quality of care and its speed of treatment. I have gone there to be treated on my own dollar, without health insurance, and I would do so again.


I hope all of you enjoy Las Vegas, the American Riviera, and continue to come here and bring your friends and families. It's a great city.