During hot weather the large buildings can absorb a lot of heat which then lingers in the interior. My own hospital was like this and I used to dread hot weather, especially on late shifts which covered the afternoon and evening. The only way to lower the temperature inside the hospital is through air conditioning which is essentially refrigerating the air as it comes in through the air vents. My own hospital trust directorship refused to fund the installation of air conditioning for the entire hospital; it is only present in a few areas... including the directors' offices of course. In A and E there was air conditioning but it always malfunctioned and made the space too cold. To be fair, in
it would only really be needed for at most a couple of weeks a year; yet those
weeks are hellish for the staff and patients. A porter at
has been suspended for breaking uniform regulations by rolling up his trouser
legs while on duty. This was soon after a request for porters to wear knee-length
shorts was declined. MEP&DBP Michael Wood said: "Our health and safety is paramount in the hospital. When you're
struggling to work when you're sweating, you become irritable and argumentative"
I've also seen people collapse from heat exhaustion, not just porters but many
nurses and a few doctors. The porters at the Watford General have been sold off
to Medirest, a public service contractor whose reputation is no better than
Carillion, Mediclean or any of the others floating around. Their union, the GMB,
has come up with a strange solution; they've advised their porters to wear
dresses. There is a female porters' uniform. At my hospital it began as a green
dress and later changed to one similar to the men's only with ladypants. Hospital
portering is still a male-dominated job. All but about five percent, at the
most, of the porters at my hospital were men; usually it was lower than that.
Because it is a low-paid, dirty and unglamourous profession feminists don't
object and there have never been policies to "diversify" or
"enrich" us. Trade unions though have become very soft left over the years
and I can't help wondering if their scheme to make porters wear dresses is
related to cultural Marxism. Portering culture is very "blokey" as a
result of its mostly male workforce so perhaps it has been targeted for
"reconstruction". I hope MEP&DBP Mr Wood will be alright. The
union are trying to get his suspension lifted and I wish them luck. Now the
heatwave is over they will probably just drop the matter. I personally would
never wear a dress. Short trousers might be the solution, although there could
be an infection control issue with them. I would rather continue to campaign to
have means found to cool the inside of the hospital. Patients suffer as well in
hot weather regardless of what the porters have on. Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-40379293. Watford
Thursday, 1 June 2017
On behalf of every serving hospital porter, every former hospital porter, and everybody else who loves, appreciates and supports us, with all the Pride and Dignity of my Extremely Proud and Dignified Brother and Sister Porters, I'd like to wish all my friends and readers, a very happy St Theo's Day. Here is my HPANWO TV video for St Theo's this year: http://hpanwo-tv.blogspot.co.uk/2017/06/st-theos-day-2017.html.
Sunday, 7 May 2017
The fliers for this year's St Theo's Day are finished. Pretty soon I shall print and distribute them. This year, as with last year, I have produced two different fliers, one for the Oxfordshire hospitals on my doorstep; and another to be distributed to other institutions around the country. I will send the second national flier by post, addressed to the porters in those institutions.
Monday, 6 February 2017
There was a debate on the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire show this morning about the state of the National Health Service. It has recently emerged in the news that forty percent of hospitals have submitted alert reports to the Department of Health concerning a breakdown in fundamental function across the board. Patients in A and E have are being treated on trolleys in corridors, up to one in fourteen people in England and Wales are on the waiting list for some kind of surgical treatment. In some cases the delay is life threatening if the patient needs urgent cardiac operation or a cancer biopsy. The studio audience consisted of NHS service personnel, patients, politicians and experts; see: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b08d8gwv/victoria-derbyshire-06022017. This outcome is as much to be as expected as if you throw a stone into the air it will fall back to the ground. It the simplest and most obvious cause and effect prediction I can imagine. I've seen the system degenerate year by year from the inside. The NHS has been starved of funds and grossly mismanaged. As I've said before in the background links below, there's a limit on how incompetent somebody can be by accident. What has been done to the NHS is deliberate sabotage on an unbelievable scale. The new leader of UKIP, Paul Nuttall, says the NHS needs more privatization. I don't agree. I'm not a socialist and I don't favour public over private institutions for ideological reasons. It's a simple practical reality. However, and apologies for my black pill pessimism here, but this is an academic question anyway because it's a fait accompli. If somebody ever suggests to me there should be more privatization within the NHS, I respond that it's a bit like suggesting water should be diluted.
See here for background: http://hpanwo-hpwa.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/allyson-pollock-at-tedx.html.
Friday, 23 December 2016
I’ve been following the way the media portrays members of our ancient and noble profession and I have to confess to being enormously dismayed. Almost universally we are portrayed in one of two forms: nameless cameo roles who come and go in the background while the Richard Chamberlain’s and Kenneth Williams’ of this world bask in the limelight; or as inferior-feeling, insecure individuals who are frustrated with their lowly position on life.
The one departure from the two main stereotypes that I’ve come across is in the 1980 David Lynch film The Elephant Man. This is an adaptation of the true-life story of Joseph Merrick, a grossly disfigured man who lived in Victorian London. The original 1942 book written about him by Ashley Montagu is subtitled: A Study in Human Dignity, which is ironic considering how the film dealt with the subject of hospital porters. The film considerably deviates from historical facts to add energy to the plot. One of those deviations has Merrick kidnapped from the hospital where he is being treated by an unscrupulous freak-show owner; and the cruel man who helps to organize the abduction is one of the hospital’s porters, played by Michael Elphick. So the score so far for hospital porter portrayals is: Conformist Stereotype 1- Evil Greedy Bastard 1! Will things get any better?
They don’t. In fact they get far, far worse! The next stop on our journey is the popular and long-running BBC drama Casualty and its spin off show
. The series is set in a
contemporary British NHS hospital and nearly all the characters are doctors or
nurses, or PAM’s like receptionists, managers and social workers. Only one
major character has been a porter and this was Jimmy Powell who was in the
series between 1989 and 1991, played by Robson Green. Unfortunately Jimmy’s main
purpose in the story, from what I could see, was to walk round with his head
bowed and his shoulders slumped in shame whining "I wish I was a nurse, I
wish I was a nurse! I wish I wasn’t only a porter!" Holby City
This deeply insulting and patronizing characterization of hospital porters stoops to its nadir in the 1990 film Paper Mask. It’s a little-known film, and obscurity has never been so richly deserved! It stars Paul McGann as a hospital porter very much like Jimmy, with a devastating inferiority complex and deep regrets that he hasn’t gone "up the ladder" to do something "better" with his life. Seeing as he hasn’t got the bus-fare upstairs to study and become the doctor he dreams of being, he steals the identity of a doctor at his hospital who gets killed in a car crash. At the time of writing it is available free online: http://hpanwo-hpwa.blogspot.co.uk/2015/07/paper-mask-full-movie-online.html. I’m sad to say that there is only one, single fictional source I know of where hospital porters are portrayed in a positive light… and that’s my own novel Evan’s Land. See: http://hpanwo-bb.blogspot.co.uk/2016/03/evans-land-for-sale.html.
Wednesday, 14 December 2016
I have a few words of advice for anybody seeking a long, successful, secure and trouble-free career in the National Health Service: Do your job as badly as you possibly can. Make sure you are the laziest and most incompetent shit-bag in your department. Come on duty late every day, skive as much as you can, sneak off early before the end of your shift. Take at least one day off sick a week. If... when... you are promoted to senior management grades, be a total greedy, corrupt, stupid, gutless, destructive and irresponsible bastard. I can hundred percent guarantee the NHS will never sack you. On the contrary you'll go a long way; be contemptible enough and you'll be treated as a favourite. The NHS only sacks people for making videos in their spare time, see: http://hpanwo-hpwa.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/one-year-on.html, or for being "too honest", see: http://hpanwo-hpwa.blogspot.co.uk/2016/08/nhs-whistblower-branded-too-honest.html. The latest news is another prime example. Sarah Kuteh is a fully-trained and highly experienced NHS nurse. She started nursing in
over fifteen years ago and ended up as a ward sister. Since 2012 she had been a
sister in the intensive care unit at
Valley Hospital Kent. She
then received "complaints" from patients... apparently. Complaints in
the NHS are anonymous and can be concocted by management; as in my case, see
link above. What were these alleged complaints about Sister Kuteh? Was she
slapping people around, groping male patients' bottoms or stealing money from
their bedside locker?... No. She told patients she would pray for them and even
gave one of them a bible... Yes it really is
as bad as that!
Sister Kuteh is a devout Christian and regards this as extraneous to her job. However, like all front line NHS staff, patients liked to talk to her about their personal feelings. As far as I'm concerned that is an important part of the healing process. In fact one of her duties was to ask patients about their religious beliefs. This is normal practice for ITU patients, basically for the grim reason that in case they get a terminal prognosis they might request the last rites or something similar. This questionnaire often led to a discussion about religious faith and if the patient was interested in Sister Kuteh's beliefs sometimes she offered to pray for them. However management at the
Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust were
"concerned" that her "unwanted discussions" were "upsetting
the patients". No doubt the words "offensive", "unprofessional"
and "inappropriate" came into the conversation at some point. She had
received warnings previously that she had supposedly not heeded. As a result
she was summarily suspended from duty and escorted from the hospital site, and
was forbidden to talk to her colleagues, other than her union representative. She
broke down in tears as she described this experience to a reporter. She was dismissed
in August and had her appeal rejected. She was not allowed to bring any
witnesses to the tribunal. The mother of three children is now suing the trust
for unfair dismissal. I can't wish her success enough in her campaign for
justice against the deplorable scumfucks who always float to the top in NHS
administration. It sounds like a similar case to my own. I'm very concerned at
the way Christians are treated in modern society, and this is me speaking as a
non-Christian (I'm a lapsed Catholic). It would be regarded as socially unacceptable
to treat a Muslim, Jew or Hindu in this way; indeed even atheists are now,
quite correctly, asserting their human rights. See the background links below for
more examples. Sister Sarah Kuteh is a thought-criminal and a prisoner of
conscience. Her enemies are both the NHS and the political correctness agenda.
I salute her as a civilian colleague who has been persecuted and expelled
because "her relationship with the Trust had broken down" and wish
her all the best for the future.
See here for background: http://hpanwo-voice.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/discrimination-against-christians-2.html.
Monday, 12 September 2016
John Jackson is a porter at the
and has just won the Kate Granger Award for Compassionate Care. The award was
set up by Dr Kate Granger MBE when she was terminally ill with cancer; she sadly
died in July after selecting the latest winner. She wanted to decorate healthcare
staff who show especially kind and thoughtful conduct towards patients. I am
overjoyed at this news. My extremely proud and dignified brother porter, John
Jackson, has my most sincere congratulations. Source: http://www.elht.nhs.uk/news/Compassionate-Care-National-Accolade-for-Hospital-Porter-John.htm.
Here's Dr Granger's blog: https://drkategranger.wordpress.com/. Royal