He Ain’t Heavy ..

Bert Hardy exhibiton

There he was, lying sleeping, or so I thought.

A private ward on the 11th floor of the new Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Glasgow, fantastic views out the window looking north to the Campsie Hills then Ben Lomond and the Arrochar Alps beyond.

Not that he was in any state to admire the vista, he had more important priorities having just came through a kidney removal.

His wife and daughter had already been and gone, leaving him resting, recovering from the effects of the anaesthetic.

I waited outside the room, I didn’t want to go in, wake him or even chat to him. It didn’t seem appropriate.    I just wanted to see him.

I just wanted to know that he was alive and well and that he was on the way back and over the trauma of the operation.

I can see him through the glass of the door, head back, propped up on pillows, eyes closed, mouth slightly open.

That was enough for me, maybe a quick chat with his nurse and get his status, then head for home.

At that she appeared, Nurse Aboui, small, slim, black as the ace of spades, afro hair and a dazzling smile as she offers her greeting. Continue reading “He Ain’t Heavy ..”

The First To Say Good-Bye?

 

The First To Say Good-Bye?

Well she actually said,  “Fuck Off”   .. delightful I’m sure!   🙂

It’s not that I haven’t said the same thing to her before,  because I have,  even although I didn’t mean it.

It was more a “Seriously?”  than a “Get out of here”.

Where as hers was more a ” Get out of here asap and never come back”  🙂

But the big difference is,  somewhere inside,  this time I knew she meant it.

This time I thought,  you really are pissed off with me.

What is it that I do to make piss her off so much?

How can I simply be out with friends and family enjoying the day,  then get a rattling angry text from her.

Truth is,  I was enjoying spending time with my closest brother before he goes through a major operation,  enjoying the football,   the sunshine and his last few days of freedom before going under the knife with life changing results and I don’t even want to think about the worst case scenario.

So we got caught up,  I hadn’t contacted her until 8:30,  but it was only 8:30 for fucks sake,  hardly the end of the night.

Yeah,  maybe I should have contacted her earlier to finalise arrangements,  let her plan ahead,   I get that,  but it takes 2 to tango,  does it not?

So what next?

Let it go?

Apologise?

Look for some middle-ground between eating humble pie and maintaining a huff.

You know I miss her,  she knows I miss her,   I know that she’s hurting,   probably waiting on a call  ..  or maybe not.

Here’s the truth,   good-bye isn’t always a one-sided decision and fuck off isn’t always the end.

We’ve came this far and its a lot to throw away for trivial reasons.


 

Anyway,   my closest brother is genuinely under the knife today,    they found a 4cm long tumour in one of his kidneys and are removing the kidney completely.

Only this time last week, we met for a curry and some beers before going to see Bryan Ferry at The Royal concert Hall in Glasgow.     He’d only just heard the bad news.

He’s a different kind of character to me,  he’s  more “get it done” where I’d be worried sick.

But you’ve really got to love the NHS for taking care of business so quickly.

So it might not be perfect,  budgets are limited,  but when you need it,  it’s there.

Last night,  I went over to see him ..  strange thing ..  I don’t see him every week,    we aren’t in constant contact,    but he’s my oldest friend,  a close confidante,  I just can’t imagine him not being around.

Right now,   waiting on the news from the hospital,  it’s a strange situation,  a pregnant pause,  when life is out of your hands,  big things are happening and there’s absolutely nothing you can do about them.

I’m not really religious,  but I will admit to having said a silent prayer.

I never ever want to say goodbye.

Scotland’s Sickest City? — #NHS

My daughter Laura was working nightshift at her hospital Saturday night and last night.

Last night, Sunday, I had dinner ready for her before she left, but she wasn’t in the best of moods, so I asked why.

The reason was that the night before and last night of the 20 nursing staff that cover her ward, 6 were on holiday and 7 are on long term sick, siting reasons of stress.

That leaves 7 to cover her ward of 60 people over a 24 hour period on 12 hour shifts.

She wasn’t happy at the situation and as she hadn’t had a break or anything to eat the night before.

Now that my friends, whether you are a nurse or a patient is just unacceptable.

To further exacerbate the issue, the nursing sister who controls the staffing levels and can bring in agency staff to supply short term demand chose not to.

Not providing correct levels of patient care just isn’t acceptable on any basis.

But 7 people off ill with stress from 20 is far too high a statistic,  verging on abuse of their employment terms and  wonder how rife this is throughout the NHS.

I’m intending to raise a Freedom Of Information (FOI) request to get the necessary details.  While I was researching this I found that all NHS FOI requests are logged and disclosed to the public.

See the link below, lots of interesting reading there, for example which Dentists have made the most money from the NHS .. always open to abuse.

http://www.nhsnss.org/pages/corporate/disclosure_log.php

Or how about the following, showing the Pharmacies which dispensed the most NHS prescriptions in the past year.

http://www.nhsnss.org/uploads/foi_docs/Number_of_Prescription_Items.pdf

I’m going to do a little further analysis of this data by postcode and we really will see Scotland’s sickest city.