I had some sharp stomach pains early in the morning on Tuesday that wouldn’t subside, so I decided I needed to go to the emergency room. So I took a taxi to the closest hospital, the Hotel Dieu on the Ile de la Cite. The emergency room was eerily quiet with only two people in the waiting room. The attendants at the front desk only asked me for my name, date of birth, and insurance card.I was shocked that they didn’t give me the usual questionnaire the length of War and Peace to fill out. Immediately a nurse directed me to a holding room and asked me a few questions. She then took me to a treatment room and within 5 minutes another nurse took my vital statistics and I explained what was going on. She examined me thoroughly and took notes. A few minutes later, she said she would go to her supervisor doctor with my information and would return with the doctor and my diagnosis. Ten minutes later the doctor and nurse came back and explained the results: It was most likely a kidney stone and it would probably pass in the next 48 hours. They prescribed some pain killers and anti- inflammatory drugs to ease the pain and said I was free to go. I had to pinch myself to see if this was real: in and out of an emergency room in less than an hour and the staff was efficient, professional, and courteous? It’s interesting that the oldest hospital in Paris, dating back to 651, can me so modern. Maybe the emergency rooms in the U.S. can learn a lesson from Hotel Dieu.