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  • FIRST POST
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 9th Oct 17, 7:49 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    How to get treatment?
    • #1
    • 9th Oct 17, 7:49 AM
    How to get treatment? 9th Oct 17 at 7:49 AM
    OK, here is the story.

    My husband for several months now has had a condition involving his ear and throat. He will get a sudden coughing/retching fit, associated with a burning on one side of his throat. Recently this has been accompanied by a pain in his ear as well.

    Our Dr hasn't even examined him properly. He listened to my husband's chest through his clothes, and has treated him with anti-histamines and Gaviscon. A second Dr who we saw whilst on holiday gave him antibiotics. She did examine him properly, but was unable to give a diagnosis. She prescribed antibiotics (as well as saying continue with the other medication). She also said he needed to be referred but it would take ages.

    Anyway, it is no better and we are at our wit's end. He is still kept awake half the night with it and we are not terribly happy so far with the state of afairs.

    Could my husband see a specialist privately, without involving our GP? And having done so, could he continue any recommended treatment on the NHS?

    Thanks in anticipation for your help.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    'Let me tell you this one thing. When you fall out, as you will, don't get blaming each other. Look inside yourself first'. - Hilda Ogden, to Sally on her wedding day to Kevin, Coronation Street 1986. '
Page 10
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 26th Nov 17, 11:31 PM
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    lessonlearned
    Good grief......why on earth would anyone want to stay in hospital a moment longer than is necessary.......they must have been masochists.

    Actually altough we never had one of these plans. I can see their value. Hospital stays can be very expensive.

    When my husband was flat on his back, paralysed, the only thing he could do was watch one of those individual TVs that you can rent. This was back in 2006 and it was £25 a week then. I was Paying around £7 a day for car parking, plus a round trip of 35 miles. I stayed by his side for around 8 hours a day so although I did take some snacks with me, I still had to buy myself drinks.

    Believe me costs were racking up. One of those cashback schemes would have been a godsend.
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 27th Nov 17, 12:09 AM
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    lessonlearned
    But....to get back to SDW and the way Beneden work. I don’t think they are the only plan that works that way. Several of the benevolent funds seems to operate in the same way. They are entirely different from PHI because you cannot elect to see a consultant privately, you do have to go the NHS route first and then they pick up the slack if the wait times are deemed unacceptable.

    I think the reason for this is that initially most of these benevolent funds were linked to places of employment.......and they stepped in so that people could have their treatments and then get back to work, rather than languishing “on the sick”. It was as much for the employers benefit as it was for their workforce.

    Ultimately all any of us can do is the best we can for our loved ones. I think increasingly that is going to be a mix and match approach, combining both NHS and private treatments. Not ideal of course but given the current state of play, I think that’s the most likely scenario. It has already happened with dentistry, and with treatments like Physio, podiatry, mole removal, varicose veins etc. Increasingly people cannot get these treatments on the NHS so they self fund.

    Yes, those that cannot self fund are going to suffer, we are seeing that already. But, until we have a radical shakedown then realistically I can’t see any improvements on the horizon. I think it’s just going to get even worse. More and more of us will be dipping into our savings to fund treatments for chronic non urgent conditions which, whilst they might not be life threatening, may have a serious effect on our quality of life.

    The NHS in it’s current format, is a bottomless pit, and no matter how much money we throw at it, it will never be enough. It was never designed and certainly never funded to cope with either the numbers of patients or the comlexity of modern medicine and sophisticated treatments.

    I do agree with SDW there are lots of economies to be made. She is quite right about Translation services for a start. SDW has lived in Spain so will back me up on this, if you need a translator for doctors, local government or the police then you pay for the service. In this country we provide it free. We cannot afford this any more. It’s a waste of precious resources.

    There’s plenty of room for cutbacks, without rationing treatments or drugs but perhaps we should also look at some of the treatments provided and ask if the NHS should be funding them.

    One area where there is a huge amount of waste is in providing disability equipment. When my husband had to eventually go into care I had the devil of a job trying to return some of his aids, in the end I gave some items to a charity shop. Same with the aids and equipment for my parents.

    A friend has quite a large collection of NHS walking sticks and crutches which fortunately he no longer needs. He has tried to return them, no one wants to know. A shocking waste of money.

    Gettingthere is quite right.......most of us can see the inefficiencies and waste but no one seems willing to tackle it.
    Last edited by lessonlearned; 27-11-2017 at 12:15 AM.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 27th Nov 17, 6:00 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    I didn't suggest you did make the rules.

    I don't like these plans that give you money if you are in hospital overnight.
    I have seen them being abused with two patients conspiring to delay their release as they wanted more money. I was discharged a day early, couldn't wait to get home, but as far as I know they stayed in as they seemed to have persuaded the doctor who discharged me.
    Originally posted by thepurplepixie
    Just as well Benenden isn't one of those plans then, isn't it?

    This is the plan I have: https://www.benenden.co.uk/health/cover/healthcare/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI2MjN_Y3e1wIVLLHtCh2a4QPQEAAYASA BEgK2__D_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds#whats-covered

    https://www.benenden.co.uk/health/cover/healthcare/treatment-surgery/
    Last edited by seven-day-weekend; 27-11-2017 at 6:22 AM.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    'Let me tell you this one thing. When you fall out, as you will, don't get blaming each other. Look inside yourself first'. - Hilda Ogden, to Sally on her wedding day to Kevin, Coronation Street 1986. '
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 27th Nov 17, 6:06 AM
    • 29,840 Posts
    • 55,811 Thanks
    seven-day-weekend
    Thank you LL for once again being the voice of calm reason.

    I became a member of Benenden, with my husband as an added family member, because my Local Government Pension Scheme sent me a leaflet with my Pension Advice slip. I read it and it seemed like a good thing to join. So that bears out what you say about it being linked to employers. It's a whopping £18 a month for the two of us.

    Then again, purple pixie disagrees with most of what I say or do. I'm sure if I said I was selling up and giving everything to charity, it would be the wrong charity, or the wrong place, or the wrong amount, or we shouldn't sell up and give to charity at all, but instead offer our home to a homeless family.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    'Let me tell you this one thing. When you fall out, as you will, don't get blaming each other. Look inside yourself first'. - Hilda Ogden, to Sally on her wedding day to Kevin, Coronation Street 1986. '
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 27th Nov 17, 6:12 AM
    • 29,840 Posts
    • 55,811 Thanks
    seven-day-weekend
    SDW said days ago that her husband was paying so why cause the NHS extra work?
    Originally posted by thepurplepixie
    Because he wanted, at that time, to enlist Benenden's help on the cost and that was the way he had to go.

    He has since decided to pay for the one procedure himself, and keep Benenden's funding for the next one, which will be more expensive.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    'Let me tell you this one thing. When you fall out, as you will, don't get blaming each other. Look inside yourself first'. - Hilda Ogden, to Sally on her wedding day to Kevin, Coronation Street 1986. '
    • spirit
    • By spirit 27th Nov 17, 7:35 PM
    • 2,615 Posts
    • 5,727 Thanks
    spirit
    B

    The consultant in question saw my husband at 7.30 pm so I don't think there was time taken out of his clinic.
    Originally posted by seven-day-weekend
    I've had a few private consults/ops. Apart from a plastic surgeon, all were evening appointments.

    The way I see it, working their private lists enables them to stay with the NHS as without the extra income, may choose to go and work abroad where I understand pay is better.
    Mortgage free as of 10/02/2015. Every brick and blade of grass belongs to meeeee.
    • thepurplepixie
    • By thepurplepixie 29th Nov 17, 10:04 AM
    • 936 Posts
    • 1,642 Thanks
    thepurplepixie
    When I looked it said they did, this is the link https://www.benenden.co.uk/health/cover/health-cash-plans/#five-levels-of-cover
    • thepurplepixie
    • By thepurplepixie 29th Nov 17, 10:11 AM
    • 936 Posts
    • 1,642 Thanks
    thepurplepixie
    Good grief......why on earth would anyone want to stay in hospital a moment longer than is necessary.......they must have been masochists.

    Actually altough we never had one of these plans. I can see their value. Hospital stays can be very expensive.

    When my husband was flat on his back, paralysed, the only thing he could do was watch one of those individual TVs that you can rent. This was back in 2006 and it was £25 a week then. I was Paying around £7 a day for car parking, plus a round trip of 35 miles. I stayed by his side for around 8 hours a day so although I did take some snacks with me, I still had to buy myself drinks.

    Believe me costs were racking up. One of those cashback schemes would have been a godsend.
    Originally posted by lessonlearned
    As lovely as the ward and staff were I have no idea why they wanted to stay in except that they wanted the money, it was amazing to listen to them, they were even calculating how much they had saved on food. When we were being encouraged to get up and walk about they told me I was mad as I went down to the coffee shop and bought a lovely cup of coffee as they could have it on the ward for free. Neither seemed hard up, they were comparing notes on where they were going at Christmas and I can remember one was going to Germany but I can't remember where the other one was off to.

    The scam was their husbands were retired but they told the doctor there was no one at home and they just didn't feel they could cope alone. The doctor was looking quite stressed, which was understandable as operations were being cancelled because there were no beds, and was probably quite relieved that I wanted to negotiate leaving a day early.

    Just think what people like that are costing the NHS and the people who are having operations delayed because of them. Totally selfish but I guess that explains why they weren't short of money. I'd rather be at home with bread and water than in hospital with a "free" meal.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 29th Nov 17, 10:24 AM
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    • 55,811 Thanks
    seven-day-weekend
    My husband has seen another consultant today about gastric reflux. He is going to go onto this person's NHS list. So he is having to wait for that. He was told the appointment should take about six weeks.

    He is therefore going to use his Benenden funding to have the procedure to check out his larynx, to ascertain if there is any damage there, as was always his original plan.

    I have just find out that, not only are there two types of gastric reflux, but one of them - Laryngopharyngeal reflux - fits his symptoms perfectly and people who are very prone to it are teachers and singers, both of which he is, or has been.

    https://www.chesterfieldroyal.nhs.uk/dl/10908_1719903424.pdf/as/LPR
    Last edited by seven-day-weekend; 29-11-2017 at 10:46 AM.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    'Let me tell you this one thing. When you fall out, as you will, don't get blaming each other. Look inside yourself first'. - Hilda Ogden, to Sally on her wedding day to Kevin, Coronation Street 1986. '
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 29th Nov 17, 11:39 AM
    • 10,216 Posts
    • 57,559 Thanks
    lessonlearned
    “Calm reason”.

    SDW there is a reason I am like this and it is linked to my attempts to look after my larynx, throat and voice ..........

    I learned long ago that Anyone who is a “professional communicator” is at risk of larynx and throat problems....it’s not just the preserve of singers.

    In my work life I had to use my voice all the time......many a day I would come home almost hoarse. I learned to take great care of my throat, voice, larynx etc. I still do breathing and voice exercises.

    My family understood that I often needed to “rest” my voice in the evenings. Just one of the reasons I never ever shouted at my kids, never nagged or endlessly repeated myself. I said something once, calmly and quietly and if they didn’t heed me, well then They had to take the consequences...... .


    As a child I had elocution lessons and voice coaching to cure a stutter. I went on to pass all my LAMDA exams. Later I did sing in a band for a while. My coach taught taught me to look after my throat and my voice.

    I think a lot of people are blissfully unaware of the problems that insufficient care can cause. And reflux is just one of the issues that can cause a lot of damage. Scarring and narrowing of the oesphagus are very common and can cause a lot of problems in later life.

    My father suffered very badly from reflux all his life but he made no attempt to modify his lifestyle, the problems it caused seriously impacted his health, until finally he developed serious swallowing difficulties.

    Through modifying my diet and taking care of myself my acid reflux is now well under control so hopefully I won’t succumb to swallowing difficulties as I get older. I don’t know how much scarring I do have because I have never had a camera take a look ......the procedure in itself is not without risk so I refused to have it.

    As long as I’m well and reflux free then I take the path of least resistance......and don’t take any risks with invasive procedures.

    Anyway I hope your husband gets sorted soon.

    I am having a quiet day. I had the first of my vaccinations yesterday for my forthcoming Amazon trip. Feel a tad delicate.
    • seven-day-weekend
    • By seven-day-weekend 3rd Dec 17, 10:11 AM
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    seven-day-weekend
    My husband's NHS appointment from the second consultant has come through!

    Or, to be accurate, a letter arrived telling him to ring and make an appointment.

    He was also told taht tea/coffee can cause the muscle that holds your oesophagal spincter shut to relax, therefore making the gastric reflux worse. My husband drinks GALLONS of tea, maybe 10 cups a day, and if he makes it he puts two teabags in the cup.

    Anyway, three days ago he went cold turkey. He has been MUCH better, other than a crashing caffeine withdrawal headache. Even that is better today.

    So seems like caffeine could be a huge trigger for him.
    To love someone is to learn the song in their heart and to sing it to them when they have forgotten it
    'I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen. Not only because I see it, but because I see everything by it': C.S. Lewis
    'Let me tell you this one thing. When you fall out, as you will, don't get blaming each other. Look inside yourself first'. - Hilda Ogden, to Sally on her wedding day to Kevin, Coronation Street 1986. '
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 3rd Dec 17, 7:22 PM
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    • 57,559 Thanks
    lessonlearned
    Wow.....wouldn’t that be wonderful if a simple dietary change could make things easier for him.

    I have recently gone dairy free or more accurately, lactose free. (As well as being grain free) I’m feeling a lot better.

    I was advised to give up caffeine. However given that I have to avoid grains, dairy and anything from the nightshade family I told the nutritionist that giving up caffeine as well was a step too far.

    So rather than giving up I’ve cut down. I try to drink half caff coffee whenever possible. And I try to drink herbal teas sometimes rather than always black tea.

    One trick your husband might try is to eat more alkaline foods and of course drink lots of water.
    Last edited by lessonlearned; 03-12-2017 at 7:28 PM.
    • Lizabeth21
    • By Lizabeth21 3rd Dec 17, 7:28 PM
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    • 44 Thanks
    Lizabeth21

    He was also told taht tea/coffee can cause the muscle that holds your oesophagal spincter shut to relax, therefore making the gastric reflux worse.
    Originally posted by seven-day-weekend
    Very interested to read this - had suspected so now going to try drinking something else. Thanks for sharing.
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