From a health perspective last night and today have been pretty good. Temps touched on 38 for a while and fevers were less than previous nights. The visit from the medical team seemed to be much shorter than on previous occasions and the best news was the lumber puncture (analysis of spinal cord fluid) revealed that the Leukemia had not progressed into my brain (what a huge relief!). An upper torso rash from antibiotics has prevented me from sending naked photos but there does not appear to be any other side effects.
Feeling a little better, I started to explore the option of improving the visual sights outside my room with a garden. The Unit that I am in (7B) is very new (in fact only a year old) having being built on top of the original hospital (circa 1940s) as the best way of modernising the upper levels (would anyone think that the process of reinforcing 4 lower floors and continuing construction with a hospital full of sick patients would be a good idea? Steve Butt might have an answer?)
Anyway as Clinical Nurse and outpatient adviser Peter Hayward said to me there will be more than a few times when you would notice the difference (and benefit) of being located in a regional hospital – things just seem to happen more quickly.
For example at my 9.30am medical consult the doctors decided to that I needed yet another (Anti) drug to combat a bout of thrush. This is an oral lozenge similar to a Strepsil – 4 times a day. But getting hold of this is not so simple. The order has to be faxed (yes I am serious – faxed. A carrier pigeon would be quicker!) to the hospital pharmacy and processed before it can be picked up by my nurse on duty. If the first few days of my arrival one order took more than 2 days to be processed as the fax machine had not been working and no one had detected this! So 6 hours later my little lozenges are still stuck in the fax machine!
Back to the garden. We have now managed to move through 4 layers of bureaucracy to get to some decision makers to see if it would be possible for the facilities team to upgrade the view immediately outside my window. I’m sure you would appreciate Jan and my mutual love of all things beautiful – gardens, art, sculpture and nature in general. My task was now to convince the facilities team that they could do something inside this century and make a difference to my life whilst I reside in the hospital.
So we managed to come up with two plans – a short term option involving some kinetic sculptures and a longer term one with an atrium style garden and possible butterfly enclosure (totally beyond the comprehension of the planning team – but one that might just work).
At one stage I briefly mentioned we would be happy to make a contribution to the hospital to help with these works and within 15 minutes the lovely Sandy (complete with corporate Red Jacket and lots of jewellery) arrived to discuss gifts to the Hospital Foundation – tax deductible of course!
Anyway that is underway and even if it costs a few $$ I am sure it will make a huge difference to my overall well-being (and hopefully everyone else in the ward as well, including the staff room next door).