Last summer, Ethel Easter wanted nothing more than to see a doctor. A hiatal hernia had caused her to suffer more than a hundred abdominal attacks within 24 hours, her stomach was bruised, and she found blood in her urine. The pain was excruciating, so Easter prayed that a surgery could be scheduled as soon as possible.
The doctor who would be operating on her at Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital in Houston did not share her urgency.
He told the 44-year-old Easter that she would have to wait two months, and Easter burst into tears.
“I can’t do this for two months,” she cried. “I can’t do this anymore.”