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Ms Raccoon would like apologies for her absence to be noted in the minutes.
I wasn’t in any fit state to deal with the bickering, carping, mud hurling, whinging e-mails, or bad tempered tweeting, from assorted individuals that fills the daily life of a blogger.
So I came up with a very simple solution – turn the comments off, turn Twitter off, shut down the e-mail and retire to bed with nowt to worry about except myself. I seemed to be all out of altruism.
I have not been, as you may have gathered, very well. As befits someone who has, I learned yesterday, now been on the ‘Gold Standard for End of Life Care’ for 19 months…and fully intends, as I told my informant, to stay on it for a damn sight longer…
Mr G was waiting outside the surgery as they opened yesterday to tell them of the sharp decline in my breathing over the week-end, and to say that he could get me to the surgery if they could find a slot for me to see the GP. They couldn’t. The (named GP) was fully booked all week, no spare time at all, at all. Not a ten minute slot in sight.
He phoned the palliative care service to see what they could advise. They would call him back. They did. The GP would be at my bedside at 12pm. Definitely not to take me anywhere. All very nice and convenient for me – but it was the same GP! What kind of lunacy runs a system whereby he doesn’t have ten minutes to spare to see a patient in surgery – but can leave surgery and drive several miles to spend half an hour at the bedside of the same patient? Does anybody know whether there is a different payscale for home visits for patients on the ‘Gold Standard’? I feel churlish complaining since it worked out well for me – but it just seems illogical.
He was charming, and said it was no problem at all, he was glad to see me having not seen me for eight months, and that apparently is unusual for a patient on the ‘Gold Standard’. Apologies for not conforming to the norm and all that…
He hadn’t seen me because I already see a bevy of consultants – why would I go and see him as well? What for? I don’t have anything else wrong with me – or so I thought.
Apparently I do. Over the last six months I have been quietly giving house room to ’emphysema’. I had to look it up too. I do remember someone vaguely mentioning at the hospital that I showed ‘early signs’ – but it was never mentioned again. They had been informing the GP though, as each scan showed it getting worse. Trouble was – I had no reason to visit the GP. The consultants I see are only interested in the lung cancer. The GP hadn’t heard from me. End result it hasn’t been treated for six months.
It has now; I have a fancy new inhaler which feels as though my lungs have been spring cleaned, I can’t believe the difference.
But what kind of lunatic system relies on a patient visiting a GP on the off chance that there might be something else wrong with them that they are unaware of?
No wonder the surgeries are full if everyone who sees a consultant then has to run back to the GP to find out what else is going on and get treated for it.
Has anybody heard of holistic medicine?
Or finding an extra ten minute slot for a patient who can get to the surgery rather than send the same GP on a 12 mile round trip for a house visit?
I might just point out that I have two years worth of scans in a folder beside me, taken in France, that show my lungs as clear as a bell….until a year after I gave up smoking and lost that nice protective layer of tar that used to save them from evil infiltrators. Since when they have been invaded by both cancer and now emphysema.
Let that be a warning to you…..
Madame will now settle down and write the post that she planned for a week ago – and turn comments back on.

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