The return of the Mad Cow
I have been quite concerned lately.
For a long time now, we have seen very little of Mad Cow Harney on the news.
I grant you she was visible during the budget fiasco, sitting hunched over in her seat looking as gloriously miserable as ever and probably daydreaming of pizzas.
For quite a while, there has been no news of patients queuing on trolleys in our hospitals or people dying for lack of care. I grant you there have been a few court cases where the HSE has spectacularly been successfully sued for negligence, but this is pretty much a daily occurrence.
I was heartened therefore when a report came out stating that our so called Centres of Excellence have been proved to be anything but that. Good old Mad Cow. She has been doing her job all along.
A while ago, she decided to close all our hospitals. Now this is an ingenious way of saving money, and I tip my hat to her for that one, but there was a bit of an outcry about it. She had to dream up an excuse quickly, or her plans would be in tatters, the hospitals would remain open and there was a grave danger that people might actually receive a good healthcare service.
The excuse she came up with was rather inspired. She decided to carry on closing the hospitals, but to leave one or two open and to call them “Centres of Excellence”. I really had to admire that one. It conjured up images of gleaming space-age buildings crammed with every life saving piece of equipment available. It is the superlative of marketing and spin. The fact that these Centres of Excellence were the same old hospitals, with the same old clapped out equipment and lack of staff was conveniently ignored.
The simplicity of this arrangement is sublime in its perfection. If you are diagnosed with some expensive ailment or have some costly accident, you now have to travel the length of the country to reach your designated Centre. There is a very high probability that you’ll be dead long before you get there, so the Health Service can proudly proclaim that your remains are receiving the best of attention. We provide one of the best post-mortem services in the world.
Mad Cow’s bluff has been called however.
Some interfering busybody started sniffing around our Centres of Excellence, and discovered that they are still the old MRSA ridden Portacabins that they always were. One of the Centres of Excellence for the care of cancer in Waterford won the accolade, managing to fail 36 out of 48 of the standards expected. You must admit, it takes some dedication to produce a standard that bad.
Mad Cow remains true to form, I’m delighted to say.
She issued a statement saying that the outstanding issues "have been addressed and eliminated, others are in the process of being addressed because we’re recruiting new consultants into the cancer control programme." Roughly translated this means that she is shutting down the Health Information and Quality Authority [who are the busybodies concerned] and that she knows the new consultants will refuse to work because there isn’t any cash to pay them.
So the status quo has been peacefully restored.
Waiting times for treatment have neatly been extended to exceed the life expectancy of the patient, and MRSA continues to flourish.
Soon we will have the lowest mortality rate in any healthcare system in the world.
There will be no one left to die.
I had the grand pleasure of going to an ER (emergency room, you call these modern wonders an A&E though I’m not quite sure what Arts & Entertainment has to do with medical care. I’ll send Miss Harney a telegram and ask) and I only had to wait 5 and a half hours to be seen by a nurse. The doctor popped in inbetween his cocktail party and his dinner at the Hotel Hershey. That was nice of him. I’m glad I wasn’t the kid with the gaping wound that was pumping blood and puss on the floor. I felt bad for him. They wouldn’t allow him to smoke. They told him smoking would kill him. So after my 5.5 hour wait I was ushered into a small room with a bed and they procedded to ask me what was wrong. Why did I spend the first hour of waiting filling in forms and explaining in minute detail my reason for being there? I was told that is for making the time go by faster and is torn up and thrown away as soon as I returned it to the triage nurse. So I explained that I was just kinda’ lonely that evening and wanted some company. Well Carol the nurse attending me felt my pain and we snuck out for a nice dinner downtown and a few drinks afterwards. She ran into quite a few others from her ER shift at the restaurant. Well Carol and I really hit it off so two other nurses from her shift and their dates and I rented a room at the Hilton and … well I just skip forward to the rest of the story. After boffingalot we all washed up and went for a nice walk by the river to take the nurses back to their jobs before the doctor got back from his late night dinner. When we returned we had a laugh over the fact the waiting time at the ER was up to 8.5 hours. Carol was a nice girl and I’m glad I had such a nice time at the ER.
I wonder what ever became of the kid with the bleeding, gaping wound?
Grandad, BRAVO. Splendid post and killer last line. It is jaw-dropping when the powers-that-be worry so much about keeping up appearances on the world stage while our health service is a medieval disgrace.
I could go on and on about my own experiences, but that would take pages. What’s burning me up is that the one GOOD thing has always been the nursing care: the nurses have always been sweet and competent when I needed them. So they’re the ones getting cut, according to the report. Oh, oy.
Brianf – They are called Arts & Entertainment because it’s an art to stay alive and it can be entertaining watching others kick the bucket. You seem to have much the same system there? Wait five hours and if you’re not dead, then there is a possibility you’ll recover? I’m not sure that we have much boffingalot in our health service, and if you look at Mad Cow Harney, is it any wonder?
Susan – A killer last line? I hope not? 😉 Somehow I think if someone were to write a fictional account of our health service it would be dismissed as a sick [sic] fantasy. It is very hard to grasp that a real health service can be so incredibly bad
The thing that must be worrying my Mary is that she is so overweight she’s going to need a hospital at some point in the near future.
But then again she probably has a private arrangement to be airlifted to a private hospital in another country.
So why worry?
I’ve heard rumors to the effect that she has made arrangements with the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Hanover, New Hampshire here in the States. Since I live within 2 hours of that very medical center and I know the layout very well, I’m currently arranging a special team of hand picked individuals to act as her own private “welcoming committee” for when she finally arrives. Considering the looks of her I suppose I’d better bring up the time table a bit.
Once the “welcoming” takes place is there any particular place you folks in Ireland might want the remains sent to? You have your choice of parcels to choose from of course.
The traditional cremation where the ashes will be shipped in…well…probably two quart cardboard containers by the look of it or the new freeze dried, bleached and compacted method. The end result of this method will be shipped in a pint ‘Chinese take-out’ container marked Pork Fried Rice and will be delivered by a small oriental type person riding a Honda motor scooter.
Did I check that damn box or what? Anybody see?
What size are the crematoriums in New Hampshire, Kirk? Lets not get into anything the US can’t handle… 🙂
Kirk M – I would suggest you give her a total refit and convert her into an aircraft carrier? I had plans for that once, but I couldn’t fing a big enough deepwater port here in Ireland.
I was in Tallaght hospital last week, and witnessed first-hand Miss Harney bustling through wards, randomly gripping beds, jacking them into the air and tipping their occupants onto the floor.
She also ran into a theatre mid-operation, screwed out the overhead light bulb and screwed in an energy-saving bulb. Bizarrely, she then turned off the light and smashed the switch with a lump hammer, so that it could never again be turned on. Things are getting out of hand.
Capt O’- No problem with the crematoriums around here (Vermont I mean. Don’t actually live in New Hampshire thank goodness). We can run 2 or 3 cattle carcasses through at a time if need be. Of course, if you don’t want her back at all, we could always find a willing diary farmer somwhere and stuff her in a pile of compost. Our compost piles can make a large cow carcass completely disappear inside of a month–even the bones (I assume she has some beneath all that flesh?).
We can take care of pretty much anything you might want in Vermont since the federal government tends to ignore us for the most part. Safer for them that way.
Grandad – I checked into the possibility actually and unfortunately, the big shipyards that handle the Naval contracts find it somewhat difficult to work with crazed bullshit. They did suggest however, that it would be entirely possible to render her “remains” into a substantial amount of bio-fuel. I imagine this would please Miss Harney to the extreme since she appears to be so concerned about the environment and all.
Kirk M – That idea has been mooted before!
Good heavens! I’m post-psychic!
Well, better latent than never I always say. Besides, the longer she remains on the hoof the larger she might grow?
Can we isolate the Swine flu and let it run riot in Leinster House for a few weeks. It might solve a few problems at ministerial level, junior and senior.
There will be no chance of the HSE finding a cure as they can’t cure anything else 🙁