Thursday, October 15, 2009

Ongoing cancer support - a positive for Gordon Brown

I have written many times supporting the need for ongoing medical as well as the psychological support required in those of us who have had cancer treatment.

In my own case those regular readers will know of the daily battle with pain one has through the side effects of my neck dissection. The lack of muscles on my left neck and shoulder and the constant and embarrassing muscle freezes caused by all things neck related. The effect of this is daily pain - depending on what I have done throughout the day.

I tend to get on with it and accept the pain but have a supply of suitable pain relief drugs. I came off codeine and morphine years ago because of the addiction factor and stick to difloenic which is issued on prescription.

Now not wishing to do politics here but today I am embarking on a visit to my Doctor to try and prove that this said pain qualifies me for an exemption certificate under the new rules for cancer patients introduced by Gordon Brown's government.

Whatever is your thoughts of the Brown government his commitment to cancer treatment has been unstinting. The 2 week maximum wait to see a consultant on suspicion of cancer, the increase in screening facilities and the government drive to up the success rates of cancer treatment and the investment of new research facilities is important investment and I must give praise where praise is due.

Alas the NHS needs to learn that "spending more time with their patients and establishment a relationship with is 2 way is the key to successful treatment of cancer"

The exemption for people on cancer treatment is also a positive step in the right direction. In my own case not working full time and armed with a box full of drugs the cost was enormous.

I have studied the rules and it is clear that a valid exemption certificate can be issued that a person is undergoing treatment for cancer, the effects of cancer or the effects of cancer treatment. In my case a "radical neck dissection"

In my own case I still get regular prescriptions of drugs for pain relief. This week I completed my medical cost exemption form for prescription drugs and this week have been summoned to see my Doctor to discuss. The surprising thing about this whole experience which quite frankly has hacked me off is in the 2 years I have been registered with my Doctor who at this stage will remain nameless he has never taken an interest.

This astounds me. My hospital consultant writes to him after each check up. he is kept in touch with my health and treatment but today he wants to see me because I have asked him to do something.

I do find this relationship bemusing. In no other service or business does this strangely one sided relationship exist between patient and supplier. It borders on arrogance from the supplier of the service and quite frankly is very "old school" Doctors have a trusted and important part of our lives, some of them need to learn that they are not the most important part of the relationship but as this is me and my life I am!!!!

I am fortunate that I have a great relationship with my Hospital consultant and his team and have been escalated to the grand level of patient representative for the SW Regional Head and Neck Cancer forum

I will await the outcome my appointment and keep you posted. It could an interesting meeting with my GP, crouch, pause, touch, engage!

Keep attacking!

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