Thursday, November 29, 2012

Big 'Ups' NHS

As you will have read on a previous post, Michele broke her wrist falling lockside.

What she did not cover in great detail was her experience with the National Health Service and how it compares with our New Zealand experiences.

Having made the decision that we needed to get to Accident and Emergency to have her wrist looked at, we researched on the internet, to see what was involved, as ,although British Citizens, we are not registered with any General Practice, nor with the NHS.

It was clear, that, as it was an accident, we did not need to take anything with us, but we took passports and proof of address (cough, cough, we actually don't have an address, but we have very occasional mail sent to two addresses, so picked one).

Michele was seen within an hour, admittedly it was early in the morning, but in NZ, we would have had several hours wait!

All was fixed, X-Rays done, a temporary cast fitted, and an appointment made for 28th November for the fitting of a permanent cast once the swelling had gone down.

Yesterday, Michele caught the train from Apsley back into London to have the permanent cast fitted, and duly arrived back with a pink fibreglass cast, but a bit of a frown! Apparently the cast was causing some pressure on the ball of her thumb.

Thinking it would go away with time, we ignored it and settled in for the evening, with teh masterchef cooking a roast :)

Michele had a really bad night, the pressure did not go away, and she barely slept (and you know what hat means, neither did I!)
At 7 am this morning, Michele was out of bed, with no let up in the pressure. Knowing that she does not get up at this hour for ANY reason, I knew we had to do something! The decision was very quickly made to head back to London, as it was either that or she was going to get me to cut the cast off.

We did not phone first for an appointment, as the Fracure clinic at St Mary's Hospital did not open until 9 am.

Michele phoned them at 9 am, they could not fit her in until 2 pm! Michele advised them that was fine, but we were on the train, 30 minutes away and the cast was coming off!

We duly arrived just after 10 am, and Michele approached the reception counter with some trepidation, expecting to be told to sit down and wait. We were both amazed to be waved straight through! not only that, but as we approached the head nurse, Michele was immediately greeted by name, and sent straight through to the ward, where the Plaster Technicians were waiting. They removed teh old cast, much to Michele's relief! and fitted a new one there and then. The wrist was X-Rayed again, to insure it had not moved, and we were on our way.

Stunned and Amazed is the only description that fits! The Fracture Clinic were fantastic! In NZ, this would have taken most of the day!

All in all a very impressive service.

No comments:

Post a Comment