Doctors, Nurses and our Health Service

I never believed in giving in to aches and pains and have always been confident that I could work my way through any so-called illness. However one Tuesday last month, I had vague pains in my abdomen and when they saw me hunched and wincing over my computer, my colleagues insisted that I looked ill and should go to bed with paracetemol and a hot water bottle. For once I took their advice but was back the next day in the same position; this time my husband joined forces with them and packed me off to the local GP. From there on things really started to happen! I landed up on a trolley in the casualty department of Charing Cross Hospital with saline and antibiotic drips in my arm and a delightful registrar who told me he was admitting me for an emergency exploratory operation and that if anything untoward was found, they would remove it immediately without waking me up to ask permission.

The next day after the operation my surgeon informed me that I had been very fortunate indeed as they had found a badly infected burst appendix, glued to my other organs in a nasty messy abdomen! I immediately apologised for giving them such a horrible job and began counting my blessings. I reminded myself what I am always telling everyone else, that life is precious and should not to be taken for granted.

I cannot praise the staff of Charing Cross Hospital highly enough for all the care and attention they lavished on me during my week’s stay. The health service is often criticised but I feel I owe my life to the expert judgment of my local GP, the expertise of my registrar and surgeon and the nurses of my local hospital.