Although we had visited our next destination, we had never stayed in a campground there. But we were lucky enough to snag a site at Lake Havasu City State Park, which turned out to be a very nice park.
Open all year ’round, all sites now have 50 amp electrical hookups and access to potable water at the individual sites. Nightly camping fee is $35 a night for standard sites, $40 for beachfront sites. We had reserved standard site LHV-26.
The drive here was pleasant and scenic, we would definitely return and spend more time at this campground.
When you have been in relatively good health, suddenly having a medical issue while on the road opens up a whole new realm of challenges. Where is the nearest ER/hospital or clinic? Will your insurance cover the care that you need? What do you do if it requires more than just a short visit to see a doctor? How will it impact your existing plans? What do you do if it requires a long term stay somewhere? Where do you park the rig? So many questions, but we didn’t have the answers for any of them because fortunately we had never had a major medical issue while on the road. But, alas, suddenly we would have to figure out the answers!
To back up a bit…at Willow Beach for about a month, I hadn’t been feeling well. Tired all the time, difficulty breathing, causing me to be out of breath when walking even short distances. At that time I chalked it up to getting older and hadn’t yet admitted to myself that something might be wrong. However, by the time we arrived in Lake Havasu, my concern had progressed to the point where I was ready to get some professional advice. Fortunately, this is a highly populated areas with nearby medical facilities.
So we made an appointment at a nearby Urgent Care facility in Lake Havasu City. After asking questions, listening to my heart and giving me an EKG, the doctor immediately sent me over to the Lake Havasu Regional Medical Center ER across the street. After a short wait there, I was seen by someone and another EKG and chest X-ray were performed. The diagnosis was Arterial Fibrillation, better known as A-Fib.
Since my heart rate was over 160 beats per minute, they gave me an IV with Diltiazem in an attempt to slow it down. It didn’t really help, but despite that, after about about six hours, I was discharged with several prescriptions.
With A-fib, the heart doesn’t pump the blood properly which can result in the formation of blood clots and increase the risk of a stroke, so one of the prescriptions was for a blood thinner, Xarelto. The next day that prescription almost caused me (and Rob) to really have a heart attack when they told me that the cost of the med (a Xarelto 30 day Starter Pack, which was not covered by insurance) was $520. We were told later by another doctor that it was the wrong thing to prescribe.
To be honest, we weren’t impressed by the care provided at Lake Havasu Regional and were later advised that it had a very bad reputation. Apparently it is a privately owned for profit organization. Later, other doctors told us I should have been admitted immediately with such a high heart rate. We figure the fact I was on Medicare, at a for profit hospital, was why they shooed me out so quickly.
Since our reservation at Lake Havasu State Park was only for two days, we didn’t have time to do any sightseeing, but that’s okay since we had visited this area not too long ago, plus I still wasn’t feeling that great.
After our very eventful two night stay, and thinking that the worst was behind me, it was time to move to our next destination, River Island State Park in Parker, AZ, another campground we had been to before, just 35 minutes away. Pretty drive along AZ-95!
This state park offers 37 campsites – eight are beachfront campsites on the grass overlooking Colorado River with 20-amp service and water, good for tents and small campers up to 24 feet. The other 29 sites are ideal for RV camping (up to 65 feet long) with 50, 30, and 20-amp service, and water. Ten are back-in sites and 19 are pull-throughs. Very nice, well maintained campground. We were on site #RI-23.
But since I still wasn’t feeling good, the day after our arrival (February 2), we decided I needed to go back to an ER. This time we chose La Paz Hospital in Parker, AZ about 20 minutes south. We got up very early and arrived about 6:30 a.m., but what good timing, they had lost electricity! But they made the best of it and the power came back within an hour or so.
Boy, what a difference in the care there compared to Lake Havasu! Time for another EKG, chest X-ray, and echocardiogram, followed by a CT Scan to make sure I didn’t have any blood clots in my lungs. Guess they weren’t pleased with the results because, by 10:00 a.m., I was admitted. The accommodations were quite nice – a roomy private room with a large window and private bathroom. And during my two night stay, the staff was great! I never saw a cardiologist, only Paul, his PA, who told me that the Xarelto Starter Pack never should have been prescribed for me. Jeesh, too bad we didn’t know that – we could have saved $520!
In the meantime, on the morning of Friday February 3, poor Rob had to pack up the coach (and Sparky) by himself, hitch up the Jeep, and drive the coach to our next destination, Quail Run RV Park in Quartzsite, about a 50 minute drive and another park we had been to previously. Rob had also scheduled an appointment there with Brian DeGerald to service our Aquahot, an appointment he had made several months earlier.
On Saturday, February 4th, I was discharged from the hospital. Because of an appointment with the Cardiologists office on the following Monday morning (February 6) we needed to extend our stay at Quail Run by a couple of days. So Friday morning, Rob talked to the woman at the desk at Quail Run to see if we could stay longer. She worked some miracles so we could stay on the same site a couple of extra days. And even better, she gave us one day free of charge, making the comment that she hoped that it would offset some of our medical costs. How nice was that! Definitely will be back to Quail Run!
Although now that I was feeling somewhat better and my medical situation seemed to be under control (for the time being anyway), we had some major decisions to make. One or two heart procedures – a cardioversion which might fix the afib temporarily, and/or a cardiac ablation were now in my future. So more questions – where to have it done? Further, I needed to be on the Xarelto for 6-8 weeks before any procedure could be done. After working thru many scenarios, we ultimately decided it wasn’t practical to try and schedule anything along the route back to RI.
So we decided to put our travel plans on the fast track, arriving a month earlier than normal, with the goal of seeing a cardiologist in Boston in early April. Six different campground reservations had to be cancelled. Knowing what our new schedule would be, I immediately made an appointment to see a cardiologist, Dr. Tedrow, in Boston for early April.
One night during our short stay in Quartzsite, we ordered a take out pizza from Silly Al’s Pizza which was really good. We also had a late lunch of Fish & Chips (dinner size for $13.99) at the Quartzsite Yacht Club Restaurant Bar & Grill. A yacht club really? Where’s the water? Last time we were here, Rob had wanted to buy a QYC burgee but they were out of them. Luckily they had them this time. As for the fish and chips, pretty lame compared to what we get back in the northeast, but I suppose that is to be expected in Quartzsite!
Now that I was feeling slightly better, we were looking forward to our next destination. Enjoy more photos of this leg of our journey here.