Where am I

I managed to slip over on 6-November-2015 and fracture the femoral head of my right hip. This blog is just to keep friends and relatives up-to-date with my recovery. It also will show where the NHS is good and where there is opportunity to improve. If you click the images tab (above) there are a few images of the break before and after the repair.

Update 10-June-2016 - sadly the femoral head has avascular necrosis and a total hip replacement will be carried out on 15-June-2016

I am home in Stoke Bruerne

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Day 17

I had a lovely visit last night from my friend (and SE Waterway manager) Vicky Martin. Vicky, with my blessing, has taken on a role of advocate for me in dealing with the NHS.  There is no doubt that the clinical care I have received has been outstanding but the 'what happens now' and the processes I must go through have, IMHO, not been the NHS' finest hour. So much hasn't been delivered as it should have been.  I would love to publish Vicky's e-mail to me from last night but, I think that would break confidences.  Suffice to say I feel so much better about the future.  It is not going to make my hip get better quickly, it not going to stop a difficult road ahead but, I think, it is going to cut a swathe through the NHS beauracracy which can do nothing but help and it will help hugely with me knowing where I am going.  We have a plan in place for me to attend Sculptor's 80th birthday celebrations in Stoke Bruerne next Saturday.

There are four possible specialist care centres where I may be sent from Cliftonville - Cliftonville is just a departure lounge in effect which takes you out of the hospital environment (and releases a critical bed) whilst you await a place in a specialist care centre.

The four specialist care centres in Northamptonshire are (all the names are clickable for more information):

Longlands in Daventry - 18 miles from Stoke Bruerne
Turn Furlong in Northampton - closest by 10 miles
Spinneyfields in Rushden - 22 miles from Stoke Bruerne
Thackley Green in Corby - 30 miles from Stoke Bruerne

My preference, without doubt, has to be Turn Furlong.  I fear if I am sent to any of the others visiting will reduce significantly and I am not sure how I would get any washing done. I have a view that recovery (and back to weight bearing for me) is not only about clinical recovery but holistic recovery brought about by visits from my friends (which so far has humbled me) and all the 'soft' standards of care. Also regular Physio; I have not had any Physio since I arrived here (4 days now) apart from the exercises I am doing. I feel I do have an entitlement to Physio but it is, so far, conspicuous by its absence.

At 13:15 I asked if I may see the duty nurse (just a question about the dressing on my wound as it has not been changed since it was put there on 7-November).  I will leave until 16:00 but my expectation is that I will have to ask again at that stage. It is now 16:08 and no one has been near me - I really don't think it is good enough. I have just asked again to talk with the nurse (16:35) and been told that she is extremely busy - I did point out that I believed I had a right to talk to the nurse - the care assistant just turned and walked out - at least she can - I can't. It's not getting any easier.

Not hugely impressed with this evening's offering for tea - 50% of what's been offered previously at three small sandwiches, a 'fluffy' pudding and a cup of tea.  Again not sure it is good enough. I understand the kitchen staff came and took a fair proportion of the sandwiches away before they should have.

17:45 - have asked again to see the nurse.  Now not only to ask about the dressing but also the right calf muscle feels tight and I just don't know if it should or not. She came at 18:00 to give me an injection (a daily one in my tummy to combat DVT) so I challenged her.  Very busy with two seriously ill patients and she's on by herself with 22 patients, which I quite understand, but a message to say that would have been really helpful not just an immediate answer from a Care Assistant to that effect. Any way there's nothing she can do about my questions until a doctor comes tomorrow - I am surprised there is not a duty doctor on call in the building perhaps but then my questions, which may be important to me may not, in the scheme of things, be important - I just don't know, it's not my area of expertise. I would have thought, however, following the assessment for me to come here, that anyone as seriously ill as has been intimated, should perhaps be in the main hospital and not Cliftonville but that's just me thinking out loud.

What I have huge trouble in understanding is I am constantly told that if there is anything I am concerned about or want I only have to ask; when I do nothing happens.  I can only conclude it must be me that really doesn't comprehend what's happening.

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