"Not just a number but still with a beating heart thanks to you all"

About: Beatson West of Scotland Cancer Centre Wishaw General Hospital / General Surgery

(as the patient),

It has been 8 weeks since I left the care of Wishaw General Hospital, which has given me time reflect on my treatment. My thoughts I want to share with you and trust you will share with those I mention.

The Consultants

From my time of admission Mr Pereek treated me with courtesy and dignity. Although faced with a difficult diagnosis he re-assured me often that he and his team would take care of me. I never doubted him.

Following surgery Mr Kasem gave me encouragement and support and I remain grateful for all his efforts in theatre, who along with his colleagues gave me another chance at life. Words cannot express my gratitude to him, thanks seems appropriate and yet not enough.

The annaesthetists understood my anxiety on going to theatre and were at pains to ease the stress and make me comfortable. I am grateful that one of them took the time to visit me in the Ward after and advised that the teamwork she witnesses during my operation was one that will stay with her for a long time and made her proud to be part of the NHS. Like her, for me the NHS is a treasure that should be cherished.

The Acute Critical Care Ward

After my operation I was transferred to the Critical Care Ward where I received the most attentive care. Of course I don't remember much of the first four days as I was unconscious but the care after I awoke was exemplary. Thanks to all.

Wards 17 and 18

From my first admission to Ward 18 till my discharge from Ward 17 I was treated by nursing staff with courtesy, dignity, compassion and with great care. Nursing staff stood beside me during Doctors rounds and gently squeezed my arm with understanding that offered re-assurance that can't be measured. I am especially grateful to Joanne and Cherylene who were so supportive and always offered encouragement to me. Again "thanks" seems totally inappropriate as an expression of my gratitude to all the nursing staff, support staff, housekeeping staff and others (such as Wilma, Clinical Nurse Specialist) of Wards 17 and 18 but I will say it anyway, thank you.

Support staff

I would like to express my thanks to Gaynor from Physiotherapy who despite my protestation persevered and got my lungs cleared and got me walking again. Thanks.

To the dieticians I say thanks for making it possible for me to sustain myself through your provision of my foodstuff.

Where I am now

I have GIST and attended the Beatson last Thursday to receive the result of my PET Scan. They found cancer in my liver and wall of my "abdomen". I was given a 3 month course of Glivec and will re-visit the Beatson to determine the success or otherwise of this treatment.

I end by saying that I hope not to see any of you in the future but if I am ever unlucky enough to be admitted to hospital I trust I will be treated as I have in the time just gone, which was of course with courtesy, compassion, dignity and care.

I leave you with this thought. All of you care a lot, perhaps sometimes you need also to stare a little, or as William Herty Davies suggests in his poem "Leisure"

What is this life if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.

No time to stand beneath the boughs

And stare as long as sheep or cows.

No time to see, when woods we pass,

Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

No time to see, in broad daylight,

Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

No time to turn at Beauty's glance,

And watch her feet, how they can dance.

No time to wait till her mouth can

Enrich that smile her eyes began.

A poor life this if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.

Perhaps this should be the NHS workers anthem.

Yours ever,

Not just a number but still with a beating heart thanks to you all

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Responses

Response from Maureen Dobbin, Senior Nurse, Surgical & Critical Care, Wishaw General Hospital

picture of Maureen Dobbin

Dear wellwell,

Many thanks for taking the time to post your very positive comments.I am delightened and very heartened to read your reflections of a time which must have been traumatic and filled with a lot of anxiety.I will ensure that your comments and poem are shared with all staff involved in your care especially those you have named.I am sure that they will be very grateful to receive such positive feedback as they all take great pride in the care they provide and knowing that they made such a positive impact on you and gave you reassurance at every step along the way will be such a boost for them.

Thankyou for sharing the poem which I am sure will touch the hearts of all who read it.

Best wishes with your continued treatment

Kind Regards

Maureen

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Update posted by wellwell (the patient)

Maureen,

Thanks for your kind response. All too often people, it seems, are quick to criticise and condemn our Health Service. I tried to reflect my experience, which was one filled only with positivity. That you recognised this is a comfort.

Wellwell

Response from Hakim BenYounes, Chief of Medical Services, Wishaw General Hospital, NHS Lanarkshire

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Dear Wellwell

Thanks you for your kind comments, which I have shared with the team, and they are very grateful for your comments. I am very pleased that you are doing well, and wish you all the best

Kind Regards

H Benyounes

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Response from Gillian Corbett, Chief of Nursing Services, Wishaw General Hospital, NHS Lanarkshire

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Dear Wellwell,

Thank you very much for taking the time to post such a lovely acount of what must have been a very difficult time for you. As I finish work for the the week, I have read over your post a couple of times, as a reminder of why we do the job we do. Your experience captures the very essence of carring across all professions, where you describe all the small things that really make the difference.

We share all our posts with all staff via our daily hospital newsletter and I will copy this to put on our person centred board in our boardroom.

Thank you and best wishes for a fully recovery.

Kind Regards,

Gillian

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