May The National Health Service RIP


Christopher Spivey


Hi All,

As you all probably know by now I have been in hospital and I would like to thank all of you who have taken the time to send me your best wishes.

Also a massive thank you to my boy Jason and my good friends Adam & Gill for sorting transport for Stacey, as well as a massive thank you to Paul W, Gary H and Chris Morris for their kind offers of help.

I did in fact finally get home at around 4pm this afternoon (3/1/16) after being taken to Southend hospital via a paramedic at around 10pm on Wednesday the 30th, shortly after which I was transferred via ambulance to Chelmsford’s Broomfield hospital for an emergency operation on my hand.

Quite how I came to be in that position is still a bit of a mystery, but a couple of weeks ago I found a ring – part of a batch that I had bought a few years ago when I was selling body & costume jewellery in conjunction with my job as a Tattoo Artist & Body Piercer – on my bedroom floor which I slipped on my finger for safekeeping but never got round to taking off.

Nevertheless, all was fine until my boy came to visit on Christmas eve and whilst putting my three yobbo dogs in the kitchen – as they are a nightmare when guests come round – I think I banged my hand on the child-gate in the process… Now I say “I think” because I don’t actually recall specifically doing so but I do remember doing something or other, because I said about 5 minutes later to no one in particular: “Why does my hand hurt“.

The next indication that something was wrong came on Sunday the 27th when I woke up from a nap because my finger with the ring on was swollen and throbbing to the extent that it took Stacey nearly an hour to get the ring off using ice and vaseline, after which the finger seemed to settle down.

Then on Tuesday the 29th the finger really began to throb and on Stacey’s insistence I went to the doctors who immediately diagnosed arthritis, which I knew was total bollox and from that point on the failings in the NHS became increasingly obvious to me.

Course, despite knowing that the pain in my very swollen finger was not arthritis there was little that I could do other than take the form that the doctor gave me to book an x-ray appointment. However, by the time I got home my whole hand felt like it was on fire and was starting to go purple.

With that being the case I took myself down to A&E only to be told by 3 doctors that the reason for the pain and swelling was due the amount of blood trying to pass through the vessels narrowed by the ring having cut off the circulation – despite me pointing out that the ring had been off my finger at that point for over 2 days and since the ring wasn’t tight to start with there had to be a reason as to why the finger swelled up in the first place?

But once again what chance have you got when one doctor has made their diagnosis let alone three, so off home I went with some lightweight pain killers, my swollen and discoloured finger strapped to the one next to it and a form to make an appointment with someone in physiotherapy?

There then followed a sleepless, pain filled night and day, right through to when Stacey called a paramedic out to me the following night – who after a quick inspection decided that I needed to go to hospital straight away, taking me with him in his car.

I was then seen by a doctor who told me that I would have to be transferred to Chelmsford for an emergency operation on my hand. The time by now was around 11.30pm yet despite me hearing the doctor telling someone to arrange an ambulance to take me to Chelmsford as a matter of urgency I didn’t leave Southend until nearly 3a.m.

I then had the first of two operations three hours later with the second operation taking place yesterday afternoon (2/1/16), whilst being made to go without food and drink for nearly 24 hours in which time the hospital staff dithered about deciding when I was going to go down to theatre.

I do in fact take no pleasure in stating that in the 4 or 5 days that I have spent in both hospitals and at my doctors, I am struggling to say anything positive about the NHS.

Indeed I cannot even use the excuse that the staff are doing their best under difficult conditions and it is no wonder so many people go in and never come out. I did in fact tell the staff yesterday that I would be leaving today regardless of how the operation went yesterday and as I walked out I can honestly say that a huge sense of relief swept over me and I could feel a real difference in how much fitter and stronger I felt.

Course, I don’t doubt that there is a mandate by all those politicians who have shares in private health care to run the NHS into the ground but apart from the one nurse called Alex and another whose name I don’t know but looked after me when I first arrived at Chelmsford, the rest of those NHS employees were nothing more than programmed humanoids.

It is in fact quite clear to me now that someone with a less assertive and dominant personality than mine would very quickly lose any fighting spirit they possess when being admitted to hospital while very ill or in great pain – a fact which I personally find very alarming.

Anyway enough about me, all I will add is that I now intend to resume work on the article that I was working on before my hand went tits up, but you will have to bear with me because I am now having to type with my left hand which due to a trapped nerve in my elbow has limited movement anyway.

I will however, repeat what I have said all along – it will be well worth the wait.