My Incredible Journey Part Five: Dr Strangelove – or how I came to love the NHS

I arrive at A&E at 8.30pm.  Four hours later, I am in a bed in a ward side room.  ‘Four hours!’, NHS detractors might say.  ‘Four hours!  It’s a disgrace & I shall write to the Daily Mail to voice my protest!’.  ‘Four hours!’, I say.  ‘It’s amazing!’.  In that time, I am thoroughly examined physically for a number of possibilities.  I undergo blood tests & an x-ray; results of both are examined.  I am seen by two doctors (one initially; his concerns lead to a second opinion being sought).  Five nurses (a shift change occurs part way through the time), a radiographer, a receptionist & a porter are also involved in the process – not to mention all the other staff & services needed to keep a hospital functioning.  Not just a bed, but nightclothes & toiletries are found for me.  I am made comfortable – both through their attentions & various forms of pain relief. 

All this in four hours, at a time outside of regular working hours & without question of payment.  I give my name, address & date of birth.  That’s all that’s needed.  It’s amazing.

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