Wednesday, 23 May 2012

More hospital visits

We began this week with my annual visit to the MND Clinic at the John Radcliffe in Oxford, followed by Jane going for a CT scan to check her collar-bone. In order to find where the latter was in the hospital, I looked on the hospital website - and who should I see smiling out at me, but our friends from Stanford, John and Jean Dudley. John last year died of cancer. Jean was a nurse. They were a lovely and brave couple, who had been through a lot in their lives. It was good to see that tribute to John in his latter days.

Once again our experience on Monday in both departments was excellent. At the MND Clinic, having checked in, we were greeted by a senior MNDA visitor who then went to tell the consultant. The personal touch was nice. Our wait for Dr Turner was negligible. It was my first visit to him. He, I think, is the PLS expert for the area. A good chat with him and some useful information, and then it was on to Rachael Marsden who is the coordinating MND nurse. She measured my puff - which I thought was pathetic - and we chatted again. Then came the trek through the malls of the West Wing and the corridors of the old hospital. When we found the CT department, they didn't have Jane clocked in on their computer, but no matter. We were ushered in to the small full waiting room. The CT assistant knew her stuff - and Jane was actually in and out before her appointment time. And so we were heading for the car. Not a bad morning courtesy of the NHS.

However, I have to admit, the previous week was another story - which wouldn't have mattered had we gone prepared with reading matter. Jane had her check-up at the fracture clinic. A couple of months earlier we'd been in and out in 20 minutes. This time, the x-ray was quick, but then came the wait, and the wait... which wouldn't have mattered had I not had an appointment two and a half hours later to see the OT about that wheelchair in Didcot. I have to say Jenny, the OT, was very forgiving about my being half an hour late - and also brilliant with her advice, which was that that particular variant was no good for me. She redeemed the NHS that afternoon. And to give the fracture clinic their due we gathered most of the doctors were in theatre. You can't control people's accidents.

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