Chapter 3: A&E admission

“On 3 December I was admitted to A&E because of symptoms that I was a risk of having neutropenic sepsis, a potentially fatal condition caused by an immune system weakened by chemo therapy. I had a 13 hour wait on a trolley before a bed could be found. 

“I wrote to the Plymouth Herald about the A&E wait which I linked to bed shortages caused by inadequate social care funding. The paper turned this into a story which they published.  TV news outlets picked up on this story as part of the social care funding debate that dominated the news at the time.”

3 December 2016

Hi Pam and Mairi

After many hours in A&E, I eventually got a bed on the medical assessment unit mid-afternoon and I’m in here till tomorrow.

It transpires I was misinformed about or misunderstood the diagnosis earlier. A clot has not been diagnosed but they’ve treated me with meds as if I had one. I’ll be getting a CT scan at some point this weekend which is the only way of diagnosing a clot. A possible alternative is shingles but they can’t test for that. Meantime they don’t know what’s wrong.

Hope your weekend is more interesting than mine!


21 December 2016

Dear friends

Some of you will know about my brief media flirtation about my A&E experience on the back of a letter I wrote to the Plymouth Herald –  they turned my letter into a story (see below). This led to me being interviewed this morning by ITV Westcountry news. For those who receive this program, the item will be broadcast either tonight or tomorrow night between 6.00 & 6.30 and 10.30 & 10.40. I’m told it’s more likely to be tomorrow. I’m not sure I’ve ever watched ITV before. Will I need a lobotomy?

Nigel [This link no longer works]

9 January 2017

Dear friends

You might know that it was a less than satisfactory experience being interviewed by ITV southwest news about my A&E experience. In spite of this, I’ve agreed to be interviewed about the same thing by ITV’s This Morning at about 10.30am tomorrow.

My interviewer will be Philip Schofield, the Paxman of breakfast tv. I  described him as Mr Beige to the journo collecting background info. She said I probably shouldn’t call him that on air.


10 January 2017

Dear friends.

This is self-promotion/ego trip text version 2. I’m on Channel 5 news tonight at 5.00 and 6.30. It’s about the usual bollocks. It’s a bit down market though. I want Channel 4 news!


11 January 2017

Dear friends.

This is self-promotion/ego trip text version 3. Channel 5 news didn’t run my interview about my A&E experience on Monday as the cameraman had techie problems with editing. Instead they’ll run it tonight at 5.00 and 6.30.  It will be about 45 seconds long, so not much scope for banging on about the big picture about social care funding. At least the big picture is now getting decent media coverage and the opposition appear to have woken from their slumber. Apparently the local BBC now want to interview me.


18 January 2017

Should you be so inclined, my last gasp of media attention is on BBC Spotlight tonight. Jenny (the journalist) has put together a special piece about the social care crisis. Spotlight goes out at 6.30.

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