4 articles Tag NHS

Vaping in Public – Should it Be Allowed?

A few weeks ago, Husband and I went on a rare night out for our friends’ 40th birthday. We went for a meal and a few drinks and a brilliant night was had by all (even if it did go far too quickly!). After we’d finished our meal, we went to a bar we’ve been to lots of times before, and as I was walking out of the door to use my e-cigarette, a bouncer stopped me to ask if I was going outside to vape (I got my e-cigarette from a vape store online). I confirmed, and he said something frankly fabulous to me:

“You don’t have to go outside to vape. You can use it inside”.

So disbelieving was I that I asked the doorman to repeat himself, but he was 100% serious. The venue we were in allowing vaping inside. Being able to sit at our table and use my e-cigarette made my evening so much more enjoyable for me (obviously, I checked that my friends were okay with it, too) and it got me thinking – should more places allow vapers to vape indoors?

It seems I’m not the only one to have had these thoughts – an official report has been released which says that making vapers stand with smokers to use their e-cigs is doing more harm than good. Many people use e-cigarettes to help them quit smoking conventional cigarettes (something which currently costs the NHS £2.6bn per year) and exposing quitters to cigarette smoke could cause a slippery slope back to smoking again.

Quitting smoking has been shown to be so much easier with e-cigarretes – an estimated 2.9 million adults in Great Britain currently use e-cigarettes and of these, 1.5 million people have completely stopped smoking cigarettes. They carry a fraction of the risk of cigarettes and can be particularly effective when combined with extra quitting support.

If you’re thinking of switching to a vape, there’s a ton of vape reviews online to help you to work out which would be best for you. Aside from the health benefits, you’ll save an absolute fortune versus conventional cigarettes, and with more and more places allowing it inside, you’ll never have to stand in a cold, dingy, STINKY smoking shelter again!

How to Sue the NHS if You’ve Suffered from Medical Negligence

As a wave of news reports have revealed, the NHS is failing many of its patients. Medical negligence, whether due to mistakes or lack of care, is depressingly common. What many don’t realize is that you can sue the NHS if you’ve suffered from medical negligence. Nor do you have to take whatever minimal level of care they offer you as compensation. Here is information regarding how to sue the NHS if you’ve suffered from medical negligence.

Decide to Take Action

NHS negligence claims are typically bound by the same three year time limit that many medical negligence cases face. Don’t accept their recommendations to wait a few more months for a second opinion and then a few more months to see a specialist to treat your condition if the initial incident occurred several months ago. You run the risk of the three year time limit running out while you wait for the NHS to deliver care to correct for its initial mistake. And heaven forbid they put you on a two year waiting list for surgery to correct their first mistake and then drop you because you’re overweight or your condition deteriorated too much. Decide to take action instead of just waiting for the state to fix things.

If you or your loved one is still in the hospital, confront medical staff directly instead of accepting their advice to wait and see if things get better. If it is necessary, file a formal complaint. This establishes that you’re unhappy with the service or experiencing problems from their inadequate care or mistakes. It generates a paper trail that is invaluable when you take them to court.

What if your child is suffering the consequences of someone else’s medical negligence? The three year time limit doesn’t start until the child turns 18. The child could thus, in theory, file a case as an adult, though this isn’t an option if they are mentally impaired. If you’re in need of legal help for a medical negligence claim on behalf of a child, consult with an attorney now. You don’t have to wait until the child is 18 to file a claim on their behalf, since you’re probably incurring medical and caregiving expenses on their behalf already.

If your loved one has died due to medical negligence by the NHS, you can sue the NHS as well. Consult with a medical negligence expert, since the statute of limitations may be the date on which they were injured, or in some cases, the date that they died. Seek professional advice before you give up due to the mistaken belief it is too late to seek redress.

And don’t fall for the propaganda that you’re hurting the NHS if you sue them for the injuries or harm you’ve received. If you file a medical negligence claim against them and win, the NHS’s management will have another incentive to improve quality of care, get rid of bad doctors or alter procedures so that future mistakes don’t happen. It is rare that the medical practitioner involved loses their job unless it is truly an egregious mistake or they have a history of such errors, and in these cases, they shouldn’t be in their job.

Request All of Your Medical Records

Your medical records are yours, and it is your right to receive a copy of them. Know that you may need to pay a modest fee for copies of medical notes to be made. Don’t worry about these charges; if you win a medical negligence case against the NHS, these costs can be recouped. You want these records now, before you see a solicitor, so that their investigation will go much faster. And getting copies of the records now before you mention that you’re going to talk to an attorney ensures the staff doesn’t get defensive and delay giving you information.

Seek a Medical Negligence Expert

The first step is to find medical negligence solicitors with experience suing the NHS, you can quickly get in contact with someone using the contact form at websites like www.the-medical-negligence-experts.co.uk. The NHS is not easy to sue, and cases end up getting dropped quite often, so you have to make sure that your lawyer understands the NHS negotiating tactics so you don’t get swindled in your settlement. You should also work with a solicitor who has an actual story of winning cases against the NHS as well.

If your medical negligence solicitors are focused on suing private healthcare facilities, they are less likely to come to an amenable settlement with the NHS. And you should seek your own legal counsel, not just go with the legal advice you may have received from the NHS when you filed a complaint against them.

You should also make sure that you pick the right solicitor as well if you want to encourage cooperation. The best medical negligence solicitors are those who take every case seriously and are ready to fight till the end for their clients. A good medical negligence UK solicitor should also have a long standing record and a reputation for getting results. Don’t get overwhelmed by star cases, and try to see if they have success with smaller cases as well.

Cooperate with Your Solicitor

This isn’t an oxymoron. Too many people hire a solicitor and then get frustrated when asked to make more copies of medical and other receipts or be reluctant to add detailed financial bookkeeping of every little cost related to the injury and maintaining the home after the incident. Or they refuse to visit a second medical professional for a separate, unbiased medical evaluation. They may be tired of all the run-around with doctors or feel it is unnecessary.

However, your solicitor is trying to generate the documentation that will maximize the odds of winning your case in court. You may be asked to see more than one independent medical specialist because they are seeking a firm diagnosis or verification of your recovery before filing the claim.

Be Patient

The NHS is a bureaucratic behemoth, but it does have processes for settling medical negligence claims UK. This can take months for some, years for others. The more serious the injury or harm, the longer it takes to settle. The more complex the case, the longer it takes, too. Don’t be afraid of going to court, though, since fewer than 2% of cases against the NHS go to court, and you’ll have a qualified solicitor by your side the whole time.

Conclusion

Whatever you do, it’s important that you take action if you feel you’ve been a victim of medical malpractice, even if it’s against the NHS. It may start with filing a complaint while you’re still in the hospital. Request copies of your medical records while avoiding threats of legal action to ensure the medical facility’s full cooperation.

Then seek the advice of medical negligence experts who have experience taking on the National Health Service. Cooperate with the solicitor when they ask you do to something, whether keeping detailed bookkeeping, making more copies of receipts or visiting another medical professional for yet another medical evaluation. Be patient when dealing with the solicitor and the NHS. Complex cases and those with multiple liable parties take longer to resolve.

Waiting for Operations (or: Tonsillitis Sucks)

tonsillitis Pretty sure this is mandatory, post-tonsillectomy…

Waiting for your kid to be operated on is the weirdest thing. Sausage has had tonsillitis about 30 times and needs a tonsillectomy; we battled with our GP for years just to get a referral to a consultant to see if they thought she needed the op. Then, when we moved last year we also changed GP and he referred her pretty much immediately. She saw her consultant on the very first day of the summer holidays and last week, she received her appointment for her pre-op assessment and the actual operation.

Naturally, she’s shitting herself. She’s a lot like me in that the thing which is scaring her most is the element of The Unknown. She’s no idea what the operation entails, she doesn’t know how she’s going to feel afterwards, she’s scared of seeing the inside of the operating theatre and feeling freaked out by it all. Most of all, obviously, she’s scared of being in pain.

And it’s hard. It’s really hard. Because we’ve always been a fairly libertarian household, which means there’s no way we’re going to operate a “you’re doing this because we said so” policy, except Sausage really seems to be erring on the side of not wanting the operation at all. And, although she’s a logical kid, it doesn’t matter how many times we tell her that it will all be okay, that we’ll both be with her the whole time and Husband will be sleeping at the hospital with her, that it will be one or two weeks of discomfort rather than potentially another TEN years of getting tonsillitis at least 5 times a year. All she can think about is the fear.

Husband and I are WELL aware of what the operation entails (I had my tonsils out myself when I was 6) and that the risks are really very minimal indeed, especially when weighed up against the risk of continued infection and, because we’re adults, we’re capable of being pragmatic about the whole thing. However, it still feels really bizarre, willing your child to want to have an operation. Leading them to the scalpel and telling them that everything will be okay. The other thing is, her operation is scheduled on the last day of November, a little over three weeks before Christmas and the worry that she won’t be well enough in time to enjoy her Christmas is very real.

If you look at the bigger picture, it feels silly, in a way. They’re tonsils. The op takes as little as 30 minutes from start to finish, less time than it took for me to have two wisdom teeth removed. I’ve got a friend whose two-year-old has a congenital diaphragmatic hernia and has needed open heart surgery. THAT is something to fret over. But, when it’s your own child, it could be an ingrown toenail removal and I’d still be agonising over it.

Husband and I are fairly convinced that it’s the right thing to do in the long-run. A relative of ours didn’t have them removed until she was pre-teen and she really suffered with recovery, and everyone we’ve spoken to has said that the younger they have it done, the less time it takes to recover, so at eight years old, Sausage is pretty much prime age. But OUR conviction doesn’t seem to make the situation any simpler.

Have any of your nippers had their tonsils removed? Were they glad they had it done, once it was all over and done with? Would you still make the decision to have it done, given the chance to rethink it? We’d love to hear from you, so please do leave me a comment below.

The NHS and Me

I’ve got a bit of a tumultuous past with the NHS. When I was 6 I contracted meningococcal septicaemia, my Mum rushed me to our local hospital who sent me home with a diagnosis of a chest infection. It wasn’t until I started to become worryingly ill and Mum took me to a different A&E  that it was finally recognised and I got much needed treatment, but it was touch and go for a while and I still have lasting effects of the disease now.

If you look at my medical history, there’s a long line of medical cock-ups followed by relief and resolution and if I’m honest, I’m rather jaded when it comes to my health. I find it hard to sit back and accept diagnoses of ‘we just don’t know’ as I’ve been fobbed off on so many occasions and the less said about the birth of Sausage the better as it’s a veritable catalogue of errors.

But let’s look at this from the flipside.

What about the doctor who DID diagnose my meningitis, before it was too late? What about the nurse who laid on me to keep me still while I had my lumbar puncture? What about the surgeon who made my caesarean incision at 9.16pm and birthed Sausage at 9.17pm? What about the doctors who have helped my various friends and family, brought them back to health or made their last days comfortable?

The reason I’m thinking about all of this is that I was in hospital yesterday. Sausage and I went to the supermarket in the morning and I started to feel extremely nauseous on the way there so we rushed into the loos when we got there and I proceeded to vomit up what seemed like quite a lot of blood. Being the dickhead I am, I finished my shopping and came home to put a stew on to cook before very calmly telling Husband that I needed to go to the hospital.

I took myself off to A&E and spent five hours there all in all. I could moan about how long it took and I DID could moan about how uncomfortable the seats were but I sat there thinking about a documentary that Sausage, Husband and I watched recently about childbirth which, as a sub-plot, followed a couple who lived in an African country. The lady was heavily pregnant and had to walk for 5 hours to get to the nearest clinic once she went into labour. Once she got to the clinic, there was still no guarantee that her birth would go smoothly as both infant and maternal mortality rates were astonishingly high. She made the journey without complaint and gave birth to a beautiful baby.

All I’m saying is, five hours seems like a long time to wait but I got to do it in a clean, warm room with chairs, have free medical attention including x-rays, blood tests with clean needles and results within the hour. Yes, the NHS is an administrative cluster-fuck at the best of times, but can you imagine life without it? Could you afford comprehensive private healthcare in your family budget?

The fact that our public services are being dismantled before our eyes for the private gain of many a politician is genuinely scary and I dread to think of what will happen to the level of health amongst normal people in the UK. We’re ALL guilty from time to time of moaning about the National Health Service, but I really hate to think of the standard that it’s going to slip to before we all realise just how lucky we were to have it. I wouldn’t mind betting that the number of medical negligence cases will sky-rocket, too.

Except, by then it may just be too late…