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MAU and Whatman ward Maidstone

MAU Ward Maidstone

get well soon pillsIf you have read my previous experiences in the Culpepper ward it explains the situation I was in.
It is almost a year since I stayed in Culpepper ward, I had made a full recovery and I had made many more animated gifs and after six months I had been taken off Warfarin.
It had been explained that there was a small chance of a pulmonary embolism returning but it outweighed the risk involved with taking Warfarin for life.
I was the in the unlucky percentage that had one return. On Sunday 14 November I had the early symptoms and immediately drove to the Maidstone emergency care centre (on reflection I should have been driven) and within a short time was examined. As before it did not take long to diagnose the problem. I waited six hours in this centre before being transferred to the Medical assessment unit. To me this place resembled a busy train station with a continuous flow of patients coming in, being assessed and then transferred to a suitable ward. On my stay in Culpepper I had heard patients say what a dreadful place it is. I can honestly say that this place has changed my whole outlook on life.
At first I was just a little selfish and thought all my requests should immediately be dealt with. It did not take me long to see that the under staffed nursing staff were very busy and had to prioritize any actions they had to take. Some were working a 13 hour shift with an hour main break and two half hour breaks. I am sure that many were not getting these allocated breaks. I spent three days in this unit, felt as fit as a fiddle and could see and understand what was going on around me. I watched an old man gradually fade away and die in the bed opposite and was very impressed by the care and attention given by the doctors and nurses. If I get that attention on my final hours I will be very lucky, some of the nurses were visibly upset but still carried on with professional dignity. You then had the patients with psychiatric problems. They would openly abuse the hospital staff and would need considerable attention, screaming and using foul language and upsetting the other patients. At one time I heard four nurses as they changed the bedding on a very loud (screaming) very large man (probably 20 stone) who seemed to do very little to help himself. Jenny, the nurse who had taken control was absolutely fantastic as she encouraged him to move first this leg and then another and eventually achieved the linen change. Four nurses eventually immerged from behind the screen looking like that had done 16 rounds with Mike Tyson. Surely these sort of patients should have a special centre to go to with burley male nurses and some sort of lifting apparatus. Even frail old ladies can be more than a handful.

Life can be so fragile

Of course you get the con merchants, people who pretend to be ill, maybe to get a meal, a shower and a bed for the night, I am sure the nurses have seen this all but still have to care for them. I saw many people come and go and the wonderful attention they got from the nursing staff. I think that some people should just experience a few days in this unit and find out just how lucky they are. Health is far more important than any of life's little luxuries. They may also realize that we should make the most of what we have as life can be very fragile.

Wonderful medical staff

My thanks go to Wayne, you would not want argue with him, a big and gentle but very knowledgeable friendly giant, Arlene (I first met on Culpepper) a very attractive lady with a very big smile that would light up the whole ward. Jenny, my first impression was that she was very strict and would look better in black tight leather but later found out to be a very lovely lady. Patience who had a great sense of humour. Barbara who gave me directions when I got lost and wandered into another ward (surely they should give us maps). Tina who knew my Dot when she worked on the meat stall in the market. Renny, I am sure that she cooks the best spicy food available. Jo a really friendly and lovable person. Helen, a little blond bombshell of energy who seemed to work without ever stopping and would always have a nice word to say and special thanks to Dr Batley who diagnosed my condition before I even had a scan. He would prod here, look at the veins on my neck, have a listen to my chest and almost like a witch doctor told me what was wrong. Very very impressive and must take years of experience to achieve

Whatman Ward Maidstone

medical symbolAfter three days I was transferred here, a few years back this ward had been in the news and many patients feared going there. Things are much better now. I was transferred there late Wednesday night 17 Nov 2010 from MAU and Sophie, a nurse on duty, warned me that It may get a little noisy as they had an elderly noisy patient.
After 3 days on MAU with bleeps from monitoring machines, screams from "difficult" patients, patients arriving and the biggest problem being my curiosity (Just bloody nosey if I am honest) I slept like a log all through the night only vaguely aware of something going on. I spent two days here and guess what, I missed the hustle and bustle of MAU but it was a nice quite relaxing ward and I had a very nice view across the hospital grounds from my bed. Having not long returned from Cyprus I did get a few comments on my tan and that I did not look ill and it was even suggested that Posh people come from Borough Green, try telling my boss that.
I was eventually discharged by a very pleasant doctor called Nicola Payne. She obviously knew her stuff and had I been 35 years younger I would have been tempted to chase such a pretty doctor all around the ward.
Thanks go to Mark who cared for so many elderly patients but who always had a smile and obviously enjoyed his work. Sophie, a down to earth nurse who could retire but doesn't. Linda a pretty brunette with a big smile. Jill the quite blonde. Jo the born organiser who suggested I should write my memoirs and publish them in the Telegraph (I prefer the Sun). Adjoy, another stunning looker who seemed to dish out the medicine a lot. Shue, a pretty little Thai girl who dished out the tea and all the other nurses that may have bumped into a slightly eccentric old boy called Dave

There are obvious problems within the National Health service, why have expensive agency nurses, we need better equipment and more hospitals, the list could go for ever BUT we are very lucky to have such a dedicated medical team available.