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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker


Bit of an eye-opener today at St. Richards Hospital in Chichester. I had to pop in to A & E in the hope that they could ‘flush’ the catheter in my chest, which has to be cleaned out every four weeks. I was also waiting to hear from my doctor about an appointment with the hematologist to continue with my cancer medication (not chemo). Within five minutes of walking into A & E I was being seen by a nurse. She contacted the cancer ward and I was passed on to a hematology specialist nurse. Lots of questions of course, but amazingly she told me her department had just received my documents (I had passed them on to my doctor about a week ago), and her boss had asked to see if she could locate this ‘Michael Parker’ who needed attention for the catheter and further medication. And there I was walking into A & E. I was examined by a doctor, weighed, blood pressure taken and had my catheter flushed out. Oh, and they gave me a cup of tea (and Pat). Within two hours of walking into the hospital we were walking out again. Job done. One hour after arriving home I received a phone call with my appointment for my next medication in November. I couldn’t fault the treatment, response and professionalism of the nursing staff, and the cleanliness of the clinic where I was treated. But here’s the rub: the politicians; the men in suits who know what’s best for us, want to close the unit to save money. The nearest unit then is about twenty miles away. In the other direction it’s the same. So there would be a forty mile separation between units. And all this on a major trunk road that is choc-a-bloc with traffic during rush hour and holidays.

Changing the subject, I’m still a long way from knuckling down with my writing. There’s no real excuse, but moving house and settling in, redecorating, furnishing, sorting out all the minor details etc., does cut into the free time. And when I do find myself sitting in the chair watching TV, it’s too late to think about creativity. Maybe next week, I keep telling myself. Maybe. I must do better. Wish me luck!

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