Hope you can get sorted with the neccesary transport Lesley. If i could drive i would do it.|
Reply #741. Jun 24 10, 10:58 AM
Public transport in certain directions simply doesn't exist, but did in many cases. The much criticised Oxford-Cambridge line (as if the universities had any relevance to it) linked places nearby and previously isolated from each other. As time went by all vanished except the little run from Bletchley to Bedford. And nearly all if not all the line is still there and working. I'd like to get anti car people chosen at random to move from central London where they all assume people in Colchester or Hove can also get trains anywhere they want and buses after 9pm to live in one of those places and take away their cars (most tell us not to have them but they have a special reason). The extra links and buses in London are virtually unique and even Kingsbury's little different from Bedford except the night buses. And we all know what going on them is like, it's the drunks who weren't quite ill enough to go to A&E that night. Great company.|
Reply #742. Jun 24 10, 4:04 PM
|Thanks, Gary. Have you ever driven, or have you been happier avoiding it? |
David, the biggest culture shock for me, moving from N London to Bedford, was the dire transport. One bus route into the town centre, buses running every twenty minutes into the town centre Monday to Saturday, referred to as a "frequent town service," and one railway station. here is a little station not too far away, but I never worked out what it does.
There is something faintly ridiculous about a local bus running at half the frequency of trains to London.
I looked on google maps for directions to Papworth.
Public transport, two hours nine minutes, starting with a "22-minute walk" which is probably based on a fit six-footer, and would probably take me 44 minutes, if I didn't collapse in a dusty heap first, followed by three different bus journeys.
Main road car journey, 20 miles, 35 minutes.
The first of the three buses is the X5, which runs between Oxford and Cambridge. I suppose that's the future of the railways.
A quick note on car-haters - are there still people who think it's funny to call people-carriers "Chelsea Tractors," and clever to smear them with mud? If I had a people carrier, and one of these smart-alecs went anywhere near me, they would very quickly have Chelsea Tractor tyre-marks on their throats.
This should probably go in the "things that make you mad" thread. People with an agenda, who think they have the right to try to alter my behaviour, who do things like throw mud at big cars and red paint at fur coats, or think that burning a shop that sells fur will help the animals which are bred for fur, really have no place on a planet which has human beings on it. Think I'll go to bed now...
Reply #743. Jun 24 10, 8:19 PM
The buses in this part of Gloucestershire are absolutely fantastic - from early morning until the evening, every 10 minutes into the centre, on to the railway station and back... other parts of the area have similar frequencies - easy to get to the hospital. The net effect is that the centre of Cheltenham (even out to spytown GCHQ) is very rarely congested and hassle free. Think if more towns had a decent bus service (and free for moi), people would be tempted to leave cars at home. The car parks are rarely full, and there are a lot of them, and cheap, so its not anti car.|
Son regularly took the X5 from Bedford to Cambridge when he was studying there - I think there were plans to open up the railway line between Cambridge and Oxford, which may well have been put on hold.
Reply #744. Jun 25 10, 2:02 AM
|Until recently, my local bus route went straight through the town centre to the hospital. The routes have now been "simplified" (nice one, Stagecoach), so they all terminate in the bus station, which means taking two buses to get to the hospital. Waiting for one bus is bad enough. Two is annoying, three for the Papworth journey is beyond consideration. I'd rather shell out for the minicab fare than spend five hours on bus journeys. |
Getting people out of the cars is as much about making the alternative reliable as making cars difficult. Glos sounds like they've got it more than right. Beds haven't. Bedford is a world centre for apathy. Perhaps we get the bus service we deserve.
Apparently one of Bedford's tourist slogans was "half way between Oxford and Cambridge." I suspect that may have been a joke.
All I know about Cheltenham is mist, horses, retired army colonels, and that two of my closest friends got married and went to live in Charlton Kings. His father worked for Armstrong Siddeley, and they had AS cars - wonderful things. He was an immaculate driver, who taught his bride so she passed first time, and I don't think they bothered with buses and trains.
Imagine going on a date in something like this?
Reply #745. Jun 25 10, 6:34 AM
|I made a useful phone call to a different general practice on Friday, and spoke to a very pleasant and helpful receptionist - always a good start. And impressive, considering how late in the week it was. Whether or not they would provide patient transport would depend on the GP, and being pre-op wouldn't be an obstacle to my changing GPs. Definitely worth knowing. Looks like my GP has got the staff he deserves. |
Today, on the basis that knowing the worst is preferable to seething, I rang round for some minicab quotes. I asked for the single fare, and for a return fare with waiting - two hours to be on the safe side. We all know what hospitals are like. Theirs is the only time that's valuable, and everything takes twice as long as it needs to.
The first one quoted £28 one way, or £40 return with an hour's waiting time.
It's likely to be more than an hour.
"We wouldn't be too bothered, a long as it's not too much longer."
The second quoted £30 one way, or £45 for an immediate return: plus £12 an hour waiting time.
The third one was the biggest surprise, because they are usually the cheapest locally, and were easily the cheapest for my trip to London last week. I used them for a dental appointment at the end of march, when I couldn't have got there under my own steam if you paid me, and 12 miles each way plus an hour set me back £30.
For the Papworth outing, they want £45 one way: return journey, allowing up to 3 hours waiting, - £80!
I don't think he wants the job!
The first one I rang will get it if the NHS doesn't want me. Monday's quite early enough to start fighting again.
Reply #746. Jun 26 10, 3:50 PM
I hope everythin works out. Why is it that public transportation is such a mess? Oh, yeah, I forgot: the term "customer service" doesn't mean much! (Of course, there are a few reps willing to help.)|
Reply #747. Jun 26 10, 4:10 PM
|Thanks, Jazmee - so do I! Everything's a mess and I've given up trying to see any logic in any of it. I just know that if someone doesn't want to do something - they won't. |
I certainly can't see the logic in saying we'll take you if you can't walk, but heart failure doesn't count. Someone somewhere must know the answer to that one.
Reply #748. Jun 26 10, 4:46 PM
Taxi fares disgusting Lesley shame the GP is such a bad on.|
As mine has sorted a Gastro specialist i 2 weeks for me and i expect the appt for ecg this week as well.
Reply #749. Jun 27 10, 3:55 AM
|It certainly is, Gary. The letter about the pre-admission appointment asks for list of meds to be produced by my GP, and they've sent a letter addressed to the principal in the practice, even though she's not the one I see and they swear they're three entirely different practices which just happen to be under one roof and just happen to share a practice manager. |
It also says that the appointment is expected to last for three hours. Ouch. Can you imagine a two-and-a-half-hour journey by public transport to get there for ten, and the same to get home again at one? Ouch.
First thing I shall do tomorrow is ring the woman I spoke to at Papworth, who said she would "see if she could persuade them" to change their minds, as though it's somehow at their discretion. I was thinking of going in to see the woman who does repeat prescriptions, because she would be able to do a printout or pass it to my GP so I don't have to.
While I'm there, I can ask to see the regulations, because I downloaded them and I didn't see anything about being bedridden and needing help in and out of cars. If their decision is costing me nearly £60, I don't think it would kill them to show me what they've based it on.
For my last couple of weeks in hospital, and when I got home, I was sleeping like a log. Bliss. Sheer, bloody unadulterated bliss.
For about a week now, I haven't. For no apparent reason, I've gone back to my old pattern of waking up after three or four hours and taking an hour or more, usually more, to get back to sleep again.
A thought: I saw my practice nurse on the 10th, and she said she wanted me to go back on the Metformin, to get my blood sugar down in time for the op. So I went back on it straight away, and I'm now wondering if that's what's doing it.
The Patient Info Leaflet doesn't mention insomnia, but the internet does - in many, many places.
Any thoughts, anyone?
Reply #750. Jun 27 10, 5:56 AM
You really don't need this added stress! I hope you can get the transport, but if you can't might it be worthwhile considering travelling up the day before and staying at a B&B? There may be someone free to give you a lift after working hours?|
Reply #751. Jun 27 10, 6:19 AM
Tell them you're an ethnic minority, you need a translator and you'll be murdered if you return to your home country. It seems to open every door for everyone else who does.|
Maybe Esther Rantzen could have helped you had she got in, maybe telling here about the rules could get her to make a comedy sketch and song about it to embarrass them if nothing else. At least we enjoyed watching them when That's Life was on. I know people who would have stayed overnight in Cambridge to save the early journey but that's a lot more expense and hassle.
Reply #752. Jun 27 10, 6:24 AM
I think it's worthwhile contacting your local MP anyway as it is outrageous that you should have to fork out such a huge sum just to get to a very necessary hospital appointment.|
It's easy to change surgeries these days and if the new one is equally convenient and they have availability, go for it. If you have any side effect from a drug, report it to the pharmacy as these have to be reported and then the drugs company can update the PIL the next time it is printed.
Reply #753. Jun 27 10, 6:45 AM
I found a sight about the Papworth Hospital.It has lots of information. It says you may get travel costs if you go there for NHS trearment. It says to coneact the Finance Manager at ext. 4276 before you travel.|
Reply #754. Jun 27 10, 6:56 AM
|"You really don't need this added stress!" |
My thoughts precisely. It really pisseth me off that they think I have to be clearly and visibly crippled to qualify - having a rubbish spine and heart failure doesn't cut it. It would be easily enough to qualify if it were one of them, or if I belonged to a different practice.
I did once book B&B in central London, to get Jonathan to a spine specialist for some god-forsaken hour of dawn chorus. It cost a small fortune, but the "teletext discount" reduced it by a third, which was nice, and the rush-hour journey would have been a nightmare and cost a small fortune. We got seen an hour late, which was annoying, and meant we could have travelled off-peak if only we'd known. Grrr.
There's a thriving B&B industry that's sprung up round Papworth. It did occur to me to book B&B but it sounded like more expense and hassle I don't need IF I can get up in time. It's only a 20-mile drive, so it shouldn't take more than 35 minutes after 9am. Unless there are other people going that way in which case why the hell aren't they taking me?
There's nobody I can ask to do a 40-mile round trip for me. All the people I know are busy with jobs or children or both, except one who's got shingles and is in too much pain to drive, and one who's in America till September, so that's not much use.
I think I shall end up biting my wallet and taking a cab. Grrrrrr.
Reply #755. Jun 27 10, 7:01 AM
|Thank you sherry and Judy who both posted while I was typing. |
Phone the Finance Manager? Gosh yes! thank you! Why didn't I think of that or why didn't anyone from the hospital suggest it?
I think I've left it a bit late to change practices and book patient transport by Thursday. More bleeding stress. :(
Reply #756. Jun 27 10, 7:04 AM
|... although... I might be able to drive there in the middle of the previous day and stay over. It's just the early-morning drive I wouldn't feel safe doing. |
Depends on the maths. I'd need about a gallon of petrol to get there = about £12 return, which compares favourably with £56. A cheap B&B might be worth thinking about.
There are millions of people on the internet whose sleep has been disrupted by Metformin, and I wonder how many of them have reported it to the drug companies, and how do you prove it? There are medical conditions (including diabetes), and other medications, which disrupt sleep. There is also something called "commercially sensitive" information, which is an excuse not to publicise adverse reactions which may have an adverse effect on sales, but perhaps that's only in America.
Reply #757. Jun 27 10, 7:46 AM
If my memory serves me correctly, all you need to do is ask your pharmacy for a yellow form and you can report your adverse reaction to the drug. Certainly during Phase IV of a trial (that is after registration), drug companies take a lot of notice of any reaction and the PIL will be updated. Not sure when this drug was approved in the UK as a bit out of the pharma loop these days. As it is the MHRA (government drug regulation authority) to whom you report the reaction, the drugs company don't have any choice other than to take notice.|
Reply #758. Jun 27 10, 8:31 AM
I too take a hefty dose of Metformin twice daily. I find that it's the 'after dinner' pill that gives me trouble. If I skip it, or take it earlier, I sleep well. So yes, it affects my sleep! Nice club we have, huh?|
Reply #759. Jun 27 10, 10:17 AM
|Yay it's not just me! So maybe the answer is to take it early. I don't think my dose - 2 x 500mg a day - counts as hefty, but it's hefty enough to make me a sleepless wreck, so that's hefty enough. |
Thank you, Sherry, I have just submitted an online report. I think the fact that I've come off it and gone back on it again may add weight to the connection I made. I've now come off it again! Lack of sleep is miserable.
Metformin's been available in Europe for more than twenty years, so it's well past the trial stage. I wonder how many people whose sleep it has destroyed have made the connection and reported it?
Reply #760. Jun 27 10, 10:27 AM
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