Friday, 30 May 2008
Salford Royal - no wonder you changed your name from Hope
Salford Royal used to be called Hope Hospital. As far as I am concerned that is something of a misnomer. No Hope or abandon Hope is what it is called to me. I didn't post yesterday as I was alternating between anger and despondency. I was so angry over what had happened and so depressed about feeling that the only way I can get through to anyone is to have to complain. I feel that I should not have to resort to this in this day and age. Is this what they want me to do and then they can say well if you don't like it then find another surgeon. I wouldn't be at all surprised if they have the right to do this also. A patient these days seems to have no rights. We should consider ourselves lucky if we get seen at all.
I am from a generation where we expect good treatment from the NHS and not to be treated like we have no rights to good service. I have worked and paid my dues since the age of 18 until I reluctantly retired through my back problem at 60. I have only had 6 weeks out of work when I had to sell my shop in all of that time. I had a couple of weeks off when my son was born but as I was self employed I didn't qualify for any benefits nor any child benefit, Nor did I when I had a hysterectomy and subsequent throat and nose surgery. I didn't have the luxury of any sick pay (self employed people didn't get any) so I had to go back to work. I had been treated well with those operations at North Manchester General Hospital but my former doctor referred me to Hope Hospital saying that they had the best spinal surgeons. This might be true but the treatment I have received since being referred to them leaves a lot to be desired. They probably are very good but it seems like I am never destined to ever find that out.
It seems that since the government told hospitals to cut waiting lists and get on with it it has all backfired on patients such as me. In order for the hospital to keep it's records looking good then they get rid of as many from the waiting lists as they can. Overweight - you are off. You smoke - then you are definitely off, Urinary infection (they take you off as well but in my case forget to tell me). I weighed 13 stone 7lbs at the time they took me off the list the first time. This is heavy but I wouldn't have classed myself as morbidly obese and in danger of dying on the operating table but apparently the surgeon has the right to veto and I can't challenge his opinion. It is so hard to keep the weight off when I can only totter about and can't exercise because of the pain. After that happened I got lost in the system for a couple of years and every phone call after that got ignored until the MP Ivan Lewis got involved.
Why should I have to write to complain etc. Surely I deserve better treatment. I first got referred to Hope Hospital in 2000 and here I am without any treatment. I read yesterday that bereaved people can have their relatives MRI scanned instead of an autopsy but they will have to pay £500 for it. I am about to be referred for my 6th or 7th MRI scan so that is a lot of money that the NHS have spent on me without an operation. If they had given me that money then I could have paid for my operation privately.
Thanks to everyone for their support but for that I think yesterday would have been a lot bleaker than it was. I have an appointment with my GP on Wednesday to chat to him about the situation and the way that I am feeling inside my head. All of the feelings that I have been suppressing have all resurfaced. I had pinned so many hopes on surgery being the solution that now it has been postponed yet again they are swamping me and churning around and around in my head. I feel that I am fighting not to let depression overwhelm me. I just keep bursting into tears all of the time.
I have been trying to immerse myself in crochet but it is hard to concentrate when my mind is in such a whirl. I have done a lot of crocheting but also a lot of unripping as I am not happy with what I have been making. The photo is of the colours and the book from which I am making a secret project which I will reveal after the weekend. The white mesh is a market bag that has been crocheted and unravelled so many times the cotton is soiled. It may get finished or it may get unripped yet again.
I was thinking as I walked the dog that if I had kept Buster suffering in pain for as long as I have been left then I would have been banned from keeping a dog but yet Salford Royal can leave me in pain for years without caring one jot about me. All I get quoted is hospital policy decrees this and that. What about my rights as a patient? Do I not have the right to be treated properly? Do they not care that they are messing not only with my physical health but also my mental health as well. I have better not tell them that bit or maybe that will be another reason for them to take me off the waiting list yet again. Got a touch of depression - oh can't operate on you then - it's hospital policy!