Royal Marsden - how every hospital should be
22 Aug 2012
I'm now starting my second night at the Royal Marsden hospital in South Kensington and this is how every NHS hospital should be. I feel welcome, safe, secure, well-looked after and am reassured I'm getting the best specialist cancer care I could be getting.
The good practice permeates from top to bottom, from the smiling welcome, the careful explanations, the time staff can give you to the design of the wards. I realise other hospitals do not have this level of funding or staffing. But they should. Whereas before I was anxious, double-checking staff and desperate to get out, in this hospital I'm calmer and ready to go with the flow, while still trying to do all I can to help myself.
The good news is that the CT scan shows no sign of a blood clot on the lung ( not unknown with carcinomas). The not so good news is that there are new pockets of fluid, which seem to be infected, and the underlying tumours have grown, possibly quite quickly. The left lung has not fully reinflated. So there's lots to do but the priority is getting on top of the infection. early signs suggest the new antibiotics are starting to do that.
I'm in a two bed bay with a former Turkish professional footballer so we've had some good soccer discussions and are keeping each other cheerful.
The nurses and care assistants, the catering staff and the cleaners all play their part with good humour and kindness. And the food isn't at all bad either. What a relief - i'd rather be home, of course, but I know I am better being here.
Once again, thanks for all your kind messages. They're a big support.