SadButMadLad's Blog

Just another blog complaining about anything and everything

Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

Overindulgence is good (in moderation)

Some thoughts from Dick Puddlecote’s post on Christmas:

Everything in moderation is OK. The fact that something doesn’t kill us in small quantities doesn’t mean that we should overindulge in it.

Same point. Though it has been shown that calorie restricted mice do live longer than morbidly obese mice. Though the kinds of food eaten are probably a major factor too.

Fatty foods are good for you. The human body needs fat to work. Just as it needs loads of other vitamins, proteins, carbohydrates, etc as well to function properly.

Pure chocolate, not the british chocolate and definately not american chocolate.

Sleep is definately necessary. Not just for the body but for the brain too. Don’t sleep for a week and you go mad.

And exercise is good too – in moderation. Doing too much exercise doesn’t make you any better than doing just enough.

Humans are social animals. They thrive in their own group. And knowing that they are liked by their own tribe means that stress levels aren’t raised as there is no need to fight or argue.

Prayer or any other form of meditation (not yoga stuff) such as just doing nothing is just as good. It seems the human brain needs some faith to allow it cope with the real world without going mad.

So enjoying yourself in moderation over a long period means that you can over indulge for certain times when you can really let your hair down and enjoy being alive. Anyone who tries to ban and stop you is only jealous because they can’t enjoy it – usually due to some chemical imbalance from not over indulging.

Written by sbml

December 26, 2010 at 13:51

Posted in Food, Health

Tagged with , ,

Cell block H for Hospital

Just been watching Watchdog and Fiona Phillips talking about the situation in NHS hospitals with regards TV and telephones at the bedside. Whilst I hate her husband, she has a point about the situation.

Patients trapped in a hospital bed and bored out of their mind are having to pay over the odds just for basic entertainment and communicating with their family and friends. In 2000 Labour in the wisdom decided that rather than the NHS arrange such services for patients the best thing would be to offer it to private companies. That way it would be the patients paying for it rather than the NHS. Plus the NHS can take a percentage of the profits. A very similar situation to the car parking at NHS hospitals – the patient pays for it.

Patients have to pay nearly £3/day for access to the TV and phone access is charged at rates sometimes higher than mobile phones. And the access to the TV is not useful either. Sometimes even just to watch a half hour programme you have to pay for the whole day. Then the quality of the TV can be quite variable with audio sync problems, channels not working, remotes not working, etc. Then when you contact the service provider, at premium rates, they acknowledge the problem but won’t fix it straight away. If you are in hospital for any length of time, the charge builds to extortionate amounts very quickly. Well over £100 just for stays of a week or two. And this is for free tv too, not just for premium channels like Sky.

Phone access is bad too. This has got worse from 2008 when patients could bring in mobile phones into the hospital. This was brought about because of the complaints about the high charges. Because the service providers do not make so much money from the phones, they’ve had to increase their charges. So patients without mobile phones are at a disadvantage. Not exactly what should have happened when mobile phones were allowed. And it’s not because patients can’t afford a phone. There are still occasions when ill-informed nurses stop such access, or when hospitals more concerned about the money they get from the service provider refuse mobile phones in the wards.

Basically Labour made a mistake in 2000 just as the internet was starting and all the digital channels were being created and mobile phones were becoming ten a penny. As is usual, the government set up long contracts with no break clauses. When times changed and there wasn’t much of a market for TV and phone services there was no way to bring the system to a stop. That’s because the “stakeholders”, and no the patients aren’t the stakeholders, had no reason to stop it. The NHS hospitals didn’t want to stop it because they made money from the service. The service providers didn’t want to stop it because they had invested so much money because they were promised the service in perpetuity so spent over the odds on the infrastructure.

Generally if you are in hospital for some time, you are better off buying a smartphone and using the various video on demand services and the internet.

And the real kick in the teeth? Prisoners get their TV for free. Admittedly the don’t get mobile phones for obvious reasons, but they are generally better off than patients in terms of entertainment facilities.

Written by sbml

October 28, 2010 at 22:01

Attempted murder

Violetta Aylward was an agency nurse who turned off a patient’s ventilator nearly killing him and leaving him brain damaged.

This is known to be true as the act was recorded by a video camera in the patient’s bedroom. The camera was installed because the patient, Jamie Merrett, was concerned about the quality of care that he was receiving from the agency, Ambition 24hours, that was supplying nurses for him. It is not known if this was because of previous care by Violetta Aylward or other nurses supplied by Ambition 24hours.

Only days after the camera was installed, Violetta Aylward turned off his ventilator and then when she realised that mistake she had done tried desperately to switch it back on. She tried for over 20 minutes before paramedics who were called to the house took over and managed to switch the machine back on. However though it was in time to save his life, it wasn’t in time to save his mind. Jamie is now brain damaged due to the actions of Violetta Aylward.

Nurse Violetta Aylward was suspended in Janurary 2009 when the incident happened. It is assumed that she is still suspended to this day (October 2010). Why she was not arrested on attempted murder charges is anyone’s guess. The evidence is on the video. The fact that paramedics managed to save Jamie’s life is beside the point. Violeta was the prime causes of the accident that led to Jamie being starved of oxygen for over 20 minutes. Were the police involved at any stage?

The family of Jamie Merrett still have not received a proper apology for the poor quality of care since the incident. They are now effectively forced to take legal action themselves since no one has admitted resposinbility or liability. The agency that employed her are not guilty of murder, but they are guilty of misadministration and lax procedural rules for not checking that the nurses they supplied had the requiste training. They aren’t a small fly by night agency either. They are a massive national agency listed in the top 250 recruitment agencies by International Recruitment and have been around since 1996.

The NHS Wiltshite Primary Care Trust has said “We have put in place a series of actions to ensure that such an event will not occur again either for this patient or others.” Why didn’t they do this when Jamie wrote to them before the camera was installed about the lack of care. Why does it take a tragedy for an organisation to change or update their procedures. It shouldn’t need this trigger. What it does show is that the organisation is not bothered about the care of it’s patients. All they are bothered about is following their procedures and if anything happens to say “I just followed the rules”. Just the same excuses brought forth by those involved in the “Baby P” scandal.

The Merritt family’s case is highlighted in a BBC Inside Out West & Inside Out South programme.

Written by sbml

October 25, 2010 at 14:05