Greg Parker Posted December 29, 2007 Share Posted December 29, 2007 The nurse asked to arrange for my wife to have an intravenous drip was incompetent. It was her first day in the hospital (a bank nurse) and did not know where anything was kept. She also gave me the impression that she had never done one before.Judith was being treated in a cubicle. I could hear the young doctor pleading over the phone for a bed. It took another two hours before she was taken to a bed in the Emergency and Accidents Unit. Soon afterwards we were told by a senior doctor that she might not survive the night. From that point on the quality of treatment has been excellent. However, I suspect that is because my daughter and I have played an active role in her medical care. This included meetings with doctors to discuss the nature of her treatment. This is vitally important as treatment is clearly rationed. For example, we were told that the only thing that could save her life was to be put onto a haemofiltration machine. During hemofiltration, a patient's blood is passed through a filtration circuit via a machine to a semipermeable membrane where waste products and water are removed. Replacement fluid is added and the blood is returned to the patient. In other words, it does what the kidneys usually do. The hospital only has one of these machines. It also needs a nurse to permanently monitor the equipment. We were told that people suffering from terminal cancer of retirement age are not usually put on this machine. We therefore had to convince them that Judith’s life was worth saving. The consultant eventually agreed that she should be put on the machine. John, I have gone through something similar with my father. Unfortunately, I had been away at a sports carnival and got to the hospital 3 days too late for any advocacy to change the outcome. Had I been around at the first, I really do think I could have got him the treatment he needed before it became too late. This was in 1994. Labor was in power, but this mob were those labor leaders courted and trained by the US. The health system was among the casualties of the new labor imperative: economic rationalism. About 5 years ago, I was there to advocate -- this time on behalf of my wife. The advocacy this time, however centered on diagnosis. As such, I was scoffed at by the specialist looking after her in hospital ("And your medical qualifications are...???!!!). To cut a long story short, exploratory surgery proved I was right and they were wrong. But that was a hollow victory since, had they listened to me in the first place, she would have had a different type of specialist, endured less trauma, and would not now have a scar the length of her abdomen (they would have only needed to make a small incision to target the exact spot). The specialist avoided me like the plague afterwards and it was left to the surgeon to tell me the outcome of the biopsy. The specialist meanwhile had the hide to ask my wife if she could write a paper on her case given it was seen as unusual. The NHS has remained popular with the British people. Although Churchill and the Conservative Party were back in power in 1951, it was politically impossible to remove the NHS. Instead, they tried to undermine it with the constant under-funding of the system, tax changes to encourage people to buy into private health systems and the privatization of parts of the service. It was these actions that helped Tony Blair to be elected to office in 1997. Churchill 1951 = Howard 1996-2007. Healthcare is never something I worry about. As many on here know, I am in the USAF and it is paid in full for me and my spouse and children. We never pay a cent. For prescriptions, if we go on base and wait it is free(the wait is often long unless you are active duty and on duty at the time). Otherwise we can go to any pharmacy and pay only $3. Dental and vision are different. Mine is completely paid for while theirs has limits and a small fee each month for that coverage. Matthew, you are still "useful". Wait and see how you fare when you retire. A retired friend of mine in the US is going through hell trying to get timely treatment for medical conditions incurred during Vietnam and Desert Storm. Like Matt, all my medical / dental is via the ADF. Difference for us is that partners / dependents are not entitled to treatment at Government expense... but since I have neither, it worries me not. Evan, I know from living in Darwin for over 10 years how poorly you poor chappies are treated. Never mind. You obviously missed Kevin07 promising to extend medical coverage to families of ADF personnel during the election. We'll have to wait and see if it was a "core promise" or a "non-core promise" which can be jettisoned ala Howard. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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