Saturday, 24 August 2013

old chestnut - private cf public; options

Feel a bit silly writing this blog, but I guess it logs my thoughts for myself – though the reason I make it publicly available is I hope it will help others in various areas of health learn something – other people with broken clavicles, or more general principles on health; and health practitioners who may forget or not know about the service user/ client/ patient experience.

1.  private cf public medicine.

so, a first thing I asked the consultant when he told me my clavicle had not joined up after 10 weeks was whether it would be any advantage to go privately – absolutely none, he said.

However, now a few weeks on I don’t think I agree with him.  Potential advantages of ‘going private’ I realise include:

1.  choosing a specialist for ones problem – in my case, a ‘shoulder guy’ rather than a ‘hand guy’.  In the NHS, my issue comes under general surgery, so I may have lucky if you like to get someone in the right general physical area!

2.  if surgery is indicated, a more choicey process – seemingly more choice of date, a private room, staying overnight afterwards; from my point of view, not feeling useless if I don’t have someone immediately obvious to look after me in the initial post-surgery time.

and, of course, on the down side:

1.  considerable amounts of money...

2.  possibly time spent trying to figure out the process, and who to visit.

2.  options:

Last week I found myself moving toward immediate surgery (that is to say a plate – meaning eek my shoulder opened up, and bone graft meaning taking something out of my pelvis – very scary – and presumably painful).  I felt very uncomfortable with this – and although it sounded like the most sensible option, I was really stressed at the thought of having to be ready for surgery any of the next four Wednesdays to include rearranging commitment on and after that day, and managing the painful process of surgery and post-surgery.

now, having visited another practitioner, I find myself more drawn to a slower approach.  He didn’t seem to think that if I had the surgery in a few months time that would make that much difference.  There seems a possibility that actually finding a way to live with a broken clavicle may be the better option for me, and this gives time to explore that.  It also means I can explore some private options so if I have the surgery I can feel I have the person with the best experience for the job, and to allow myself the most comfortable experience (private room, overnight stay post-op) – if I feel I can afford it – which I may feel able to, and to prioritise this.

allfornow – any thoughts yourself, anyone out there?


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