Monday, 29 May 2017

Who paid?

It rains once more. Another day the Fox will not have to water the kiddies.

The other day I listened to “Home Front” on BBC Radio 4. This 15 minute programme dramatises actual events that happened on the Home Front exactly 100 years ago i.e. currently in May 1917 during the First World War. In that particular episode Kent was bombed with several casualties.

It raised a question in my mind which I’d never thought about before. In the pre-NHS days of both World Wars, who paid for the medical needs of those who were injured on the home front?

Those involved in the armed services were presumably covered by the state as part of their contract of employment as soldiers, sailors & airmen, but what about civilian casualties? Were they whisked off to hospital with severe injuries to be confronted with the question of whether they could afford to pay? And what happened if you couldn't afford to pay? Or were all people regarded as casualties of war, civilian or military personnel, & so given free medical treatment? And how do you distinguish the fee paying person who fell down the stairs in their panic breaking their leg, from the person with a broken leg caused by a bomb landing? It’s something I’ve never thought of before. I wonder what the answer is. It would make an interesting programme.

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Welcome rain

After a few days of great heat, the thunder rolled yesterday. The rain descended, at first in big drops but later as great stair rods. The world is a lot fresher & cooler today. We will not be eating out today – too cool for this delicate flower.

I now expect the garden to have another spurt. The gardens were already beginning to look dry. The Fox relished a day off watering-the-pots duty. It’s been an evening routine for him most days of late.

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Well beaten path

Yesterday was a day of frequent trips to the surgery.

Dermatology on Thursday gave me a prescription to take to my surgery for some treatment for the psoriasis. It could not be taken directly to a pharmacy. (When he first said he was going to give something to me, I naively thought we could just stop at the hospital pharmacy to get it filled while we waited. No such luck.)

The receptionist at the surgery said first of all that it would be ready in 5 days time. 5 days! That’s ridiculous. The Fox pointed out I was supposed to be using the medication immediately. If it’s urgent, I was told, she could get it done for 5pm or the following morning. We went away.  

We left going back until yesterday. In the morning, I went up to the surgery on the Mean Machine, my mobility scooter. No prescription. They finally located it in the system. Apparently, the person who did the scanning had left work at 3pm on Thursday – we hadn’t arrived at the surgery until nearer 3.15pm - so it hadn’t been done yet! The receptionist did her best to expedite the situation. I could wait, or come back later. I asked would it be just 15 minutes or a couple of hours wait. She wasn’t sure. So I went home, knowing we were intending to go out in the afternoon so could easily drop in & the medication isn’t supposed to be used until night-time.

So we went out, & stopped at the surgery on the way home 4ish. Still no prescription. I was glad I hadn’t decided to wait! Especially as I hadn’t bothered taking any reading to do while I waited as I hadn’t expected to have to wait. The prescription had been issued but a doctor hadn’t signed it yet. The doctors had a tea break from 4 to 4.30pm so weren’t available to sign it at the moment. Come back after 5pm. We went home.

The Fox made the next trip on his own. The prescription was issued, ready to be filled by the chemist on the same premises. He went to the surgery. One item was ready. The other had a special applicator which they didn’t have in stock. They would try to get one for me. Fortunately the medication they did have in was the one I was supposed to use for the first 10 days & only then use the second one. The chemist is hoping to have located the applicator by then when we returned for the second ointment.

That means this prescription will have taken 5 trips - assuming the rest of the prescription is available when we go back in 10 days time - to the surgery for one prescription. What is more I would have thought it could have been written in such a way it could have been filled out at the hospital so requiring no visits to the surgery! I suspect it’s a question of budgets. If it’s to be filled at the hospital presumably it would be the hospital funds that were used, whereas if it goes through the surgery it is their budget. I couldn’t care less whose budget it, surely it is still the NHS’ budget! Politics!! Grr!