I'm on the Horns of a Dilemma. Uncomfortable? You bet!

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I'm on the Horns of a Dilemma. Uncomfortable? You bet!

Postby oldborris » Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:03 am

For the first time since I've been on dialysis I am faced with a
real, live, guaranteed, patented, copper-bottomed, morocco-bound,
double-distilled, multi-faceted Problem with a capital P.

None of you will be able to help with this Problem. It is something
that I will have to solve on my own. But I'd like to talk about it
because....well, because I just like to talk.

It is this Problem that has hoisted me on to the h.o.a.d where I now
sit, squirmingly squatting, so sadly sobbing.

The Problem, to put it in a nutshell [any nutshell will do] is where
to get dialysis for the ten week period from September 12 to November
20 during which I will be denied access to my apartment.

You remember my lift, the dodgy lift about which I wrote before.
Well, the end is nigh for that lift. It is slowly expiring.
Medically mechanical opinion is that it can't last longer than
September 12 and on that date they propose to withdraw all life
support systems. Relatives of the lift have been informed and already are converging on London. A mechanical priest is coming to administer the Last Mechanical Rites to speed its soul to the Great Elevator in the Sky and there will be a procession of lifts to the local scrapyard, stopping briefly at a local garage to celebrate its 30 year life with copious quantities of home-brewed oil.

That's all vey well for the lift, getting such a grand send off. But what about me?

How will I be able to get to my 12th floor apartment?

The short answer is that I won't be able.

The long answer is....well, you don't want to know that.

So why don't I rent another flat nearby and still close to my
dialysis centre?

Why?.....well, when did you last try to rent a flat in London? A
decent flat will cost an arm and a leg. To rent a flat like mine I'd
have to pay £350 a week; that's nearly 650 US dollars a week. Not a
year, not a month, but every bloody week! From where am I going to get that kind of money ?

Social Services? Don't talk to me about Social Services. If one is a Middle Englander who has saved up enough to buy his/her own place, Social Services don't want to know. But if one is poor or feckless [which, of course not all poor are] Social Services will climb mountains and ford streams to help one. But, quite honestly, from what I've read of temporary council accomodation. I'd sooner go to prison.

A friend who lives in Luton [locally known as the Islamic Republic of
Luton] has offered to put me up. But she has severe m.s. and I can't impose myself on her in such circumstances. In Norfolk near I have another cousin, a 59th cousin,
I think, some 200 times removed. But a cousin nonetheless. But the hospital there doesn't have room for those they contemptuously refer to as "holiday transients".

Holiday? Holiday??? Being evicted from my own cosy apartment for
ten weeks is no holiday, believe me. It would be if I could go
anywhere I liked. I'd happily swan off to Barbadoes, or to the
Sychelles, luxuriate in the warm sun of Greece, re-deliver the Mark
Anthony speech in the Forum at Rome, revisit the US and try, once
more, to persuade our colonial cousins to return to their natural
home, the Mother Country. But the necessity for continual
haemodialysis imposes on my movements its terrifying limitation of
which I am only now conscious in all its implacable tyranny.

You would think, wouldn't you, that being British [well, I'm Irish
actually but can pass for a Brit "in the dark with the light behind
me"] I could get dialysis anywhere in the UK.

No, I damn well can't.

Each group of hospitals in an area is in a Trust which would have to
foot the bill if one of its patients dialyses elsewhere. And they
won't, except, maybe, for a fortnight's holiday. But that's only
half the problem. Almost all the hospitals in the UK have room only
for their own local patients. Of course there are private clinics,
but they charge about $650 a session: say about $20,000 for ten weeks.
Get on yer bike, mate!

The only way, as far as I can see, to get guaranteed dialysis
anywhere in the UK, is to get oneself locked up in the cooler. Yes,
if I murder, or rape, or mug, or housebreak, I get better and more
preferential treatment than would the godfearing, lawabiding, honest
citizen that I sometimes am. I'd be better off robbing a bank!

Robbing a ba......now! there's an idea! Not a big bank, of course. I
don't want to end up with too much money. For it's not money I want.
And if I get caught [and, of course, I want to get caught: that's the
whole object of the exercise] I might end up with ten years instead
of the ten weeks I only seek.

No, a small country bank will suit me very nicely, thank you.
Somewhere I can get away [but not too far away] with a couple of
quid. Just enough to confirm me as a hardened, dare-devil bank
robber who needs to be put away for ten weeks. The judge will, I am
sure, take into account my rapidly approaching octogenarianity [just a few months to go!] and that I positively refused more than a few
quid even when the cashier insisted on filling my outstretched hand
with more notes than I could handle. "Anything to say", the judge
will genially ask, "before I pass sentence". And I'd reply "yes, my
lord, could you make that with dialysis?"

There you are. Problem solved. I knew that I could hack it.

But wait..... I've never robbed a bank before and don't know how to
go about it. But in many years of reading this message board I have
always found that there is always someone who has travelled the same
road. So.....any tips?
oldborris
 
Posts: 266
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2004 1:01 pm
Location: Fulham, London, U.K.

Poor Old Borris

Postby amanda in CA » Mon Aug 23, 2004 9:40 am

Hi, Old Borris, not too sure where you intend going to live for this 10 week period but if your dialysis unit will not foot the bill for you to have dialysis elsewhere I suggest that you transfer to the unit in the area where you will be staying and then transfer back to your other unit at the end of that time -it seems like a realistic solution to me. Amanda
amanda in CA
 
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Location: Georgia, USA

Postby JMan » Mon Aug 23, 2004 12:21 pm

I beleive country post offices are popular with small time criminals ;)

On a more serious note.. wherever you go under the NHS 'dialysis is free at point of service' thats the crux of it. And this is particularly valid as this isn't a case of going on holiday.

I know you are possibly the boards most qualified dilemma tamer :D but if you do get stuck the NKF HelpLine 'might' have something to offer or a direction to suggest for for information.

Just a thought
"Dialysis! What is this? The dark ages!"
L. 'Bones' McCoy, ST"
Read my blog:)
Live to Fly
Image
http://www.flickr.com/cybercast
JMan
 
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Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2004 10:21 am
Location: A small vyllage in Ye Olde London Town, An IÆ’land, Planet Earth, The Universe

on the horns of a dilemma

Postby Bruce » Mon Aug 23, 2004 2:48 pm

Old Borris:

I don't know much azbout the UK having not been there since 1961, but here in the states the TV news organizations love to find stories like yours and broadcast them and get the government working to do someting about it. Public opinion is a powerful force and if you can get your story aired some bureaucrat might just come up with a solution.

Good luck. We're all pulling for you,

Bruce
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Location: Long Island, New York

Postby oldborris » Tue Aug 24, 2004 9:56 am

>I suggest that you transfer to the unit in the area where you will be >staying and then transfer back to your other unit at the end of that time ->it seems like a realistic solution to me. Amanda

But, Amanda, that's the whole crux of the matter. It is almost impossible to find room at any hospital other than one's own, whether as a transfer or as a holiday patient. I did find a hospital in Luton, where a cousin lives, who would accept me as a transfer but, as I said, I am most reluctant to foist myself on her, as a severe m.s. patient, with enough problems of her own without having to absorb mine.




--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

>I beleive country post offices are popular with small time criminals JMan

I will, of course, need an accomplice. Do I read into your posting an offer to be that accomplice?
oldborris
 
Posts: 266
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2004 1:01 pm
Location: Fulham, London, U.K.

Postby Hal » Sat Aug 28, 2004 4:09 pm

Hi oldborris,

As you said I can't solve your problem but a couple of phone numbers for you if you are still stuck:

NKF Helpline: 0845 601 02 09

British Kidney Patient Association: 01420 472021 or 01420 472022

Or try your local Citizens Advice Bureau (you should be able to call them also).

Good luck,

Hal.
Hal
 
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Postby JMan » Sat Aug 28, 2004 6:12 pm

Digressing slightly but taking up a point that oldborris has mentioned.

The costing for actual dx is the same wherever you dialyse in the UK. the care is free at point of service. this is the crux of the matter so do not be put off by managers saying 'its too expensive'

Also. Sorry, but NHS employees and others get 4 weeks holiday? Are we suddenly 2nd class citizens? If you want to go away for 4 weeks (or 3 or a UK business trip) they need to find you somewhere to dialyze. Anything else is discrimination IMO.

The term 'holiday' dialysis is a misused one, implying that its a 'luxury' rather than a vital to life treatment. Esp bad for managers who have little idea of renal treatment.
Dialysis away from home is more appropriate:)

If you get told of a 2 week limit. Ask them to show you where that is stated in National Renal Policy :D

And on OldB's problem http://users.argonet.co.uk/body/rmrt/tptgb.html is a long shot but if all other avenues are exhausted then may be worth a try.
"Dialysis! What is this? The dark ages!"
L. 'Bones' McCoy, ST"
Read my blog:)
Live to Fly
Image
http://www.flickr.com/cybercast
JMan
 
Posts: 3419
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2004 10:21 am
Location: A small vyllage in Ye Olde London Town, An IÆ’land, Planet Earth, The Universe


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