Saturday, February 10, 2007

A week of British Beauty

Are you grateful for your life? Or do you whinge about everything? Gratitude is all about appreciating the things you have in your life. It is a way of reaching back to your inner happiness and allows you to notice what is right instead of just what is wrong.

Exercise an Attitude of Gratitude

Try listing 10 things you are grateful for in your life, including things you usually take for granted. This could include your health, family, home, friends, work colleagues. After that add to the list all things you could not survive without, such as air, water and food. Take time to focus on the awesome wonders of the world. See things as if you are seeing them for the first time ever. Go outside, slow down and appreciate the natural beauty around you and begin to enjoy the simple things in life, such as walks and sharing meals with people. Become aware, every second, of just how much joy there is in your life. Say ‘thank you’ as often as possible to all the people who make your life what it is. Adopt gratitude.

In the modern consumer society it can sometime feel that no matter how fast you run, you will never catch up with expectations. This feeling extends beyond being a perfectionist, into living for the future, where you hurriedly already want to be on the next rung of a ladder, but forget to give thanks for all the things you already have. In a week when most of the country has experienced the natural beauty of snow - it has certainly reminded me how picturesque Britain is.


Jeremy Jacobs said...

Michelle, Have you seen my whinge, sorry complaint about Blacks? You see if nobody complains about anything nothing changes.

Today, I was true to my word and went to a brilliant shop in the West End. The staff were attentive, helpful and, shock, horror, probe were honest and did all the "right things". I've now completed my shop for the Trek.

I await to hear from Blacks.

Whinging for me seems to work positively.

Jeremy Jacobs said...

BTW, Totally agree with you about "thank you's"

Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Hi Jeremy, Thanks for your comment and the mention on your blog. Being grateful doesn't mean that you should not tell people when they have done something wrong - I am sure they would want to learn from their mistake. It does seem ironic that Blacks close due to bad weather - you would have thought it was a missed the opportunity of winter weather sales... they obviously missed your sale. Take care on your trek. With best wishes. Michelle

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Michelle, I'm all for positive thinking and nice thoughts.
You would think that people would want to learn from what they are doing wrong or listen to how to improve things.
But just because you might like to think that is true, does not make it true.
In point of fact if you make a complaint in the nhs, they are good at making a pretence that the complaint has been looked at, but what they are good at is dismissing the complaint. And if you persist they will use the full force of their resources and the law (by definition prejudiced in favour of the medical profession, nhs trusts, and PCTs) to discredit the complaint - even to the extent of making the patient or the complainant the problem.

If someone is in pain or discomfort it is of little use going before a County Judge or High Court Judge and claiming that the complaint has been dealt with - that is clearly & blatantly an attempt to limit liability. And ironically the matter than the patient might still be in pain or discomfort is irrelevant to the Judge, he has to trust the judgement of the Medical Profession. So is the Medical Profession say they have treated your broken arm - even if the judge can clearly see the broken bone sticking out from your arm, in his court room, he cannot find against 'medical opinion'

The other problem is if there are complications following surgery, Now I don't see why doctors and hospitals are afraid to admit there are often (even frequently) complications following surgery. In some cases you may have to find another hospital - in which you are registered as a new patient - therefore the complication is not 'recorded' either in the first hospital, nor of course the second hospital.
America & the litigant society have created a culture in medicine of limiting liability rather than being open about complications.
Do you know how many people are having hip operations in desperation and because they are 'free' - yes doctors & surgeons love high priced surgery - yet have you met ONE who is happy with the results. And I mean happy, not resigned and happy that at least the pain has been reduced.
Anyone HAPPY with hip replacement
Anyone HAPPY with nhs Dentures.
I rest my case!

Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Hi there Quasar9, Many thanks for your comment. I think it's always helpful to see what can be learnt from mistakes. Everyone is human and mistakes do happen. As far as the NHS goes, I think different hospitals tend to have different complaint procedures. Just to briefly answer your broken arm litigation question - the Judge would not hide a doctor's neglience, nor would the GMC (General Medical Council), nor would any doctor. Expert witnesses in medical cases are brought by both the claimant and defendant, both are legally bound to be independent experts. I would also hope that if the bone really was sticking out of the arm, all would direct the claimant to the nearest hospital! I am less sure what you mean by hip replacements - I have seen many happy people post hip operation. But yes, all operations carry a risk. In modern society many surgeons have the difficult task of trying to explain the potential complications of any surgery. I would also refer you to the comments made by Prof Peter Friend in the 'Future of Surgery' chapter - summary earlier on this blog. He comments about government proposed league table for surgeons regarding operation success rates - he poignantly notes that success rates can significantly depend upon the health of the patient you operate on. The very last thing we want is for surgeons not to take on complicated cases, just because they would be worried about their rating scale. In summary though no matter whether you are patient, doctor, lawyer or dentist - everyone can learn from mistakes.

Peter Smallbone said...

Despite it taking three hours to get home from work on Friday, I did like the snow anyway.

QUASAR9 said...

Dear Michelle, the picture or photograph of the snow is beautiful and very Xmassy
But you keep assuming that things are as you think they are, or as you fell they should be, when in reality they are not so.
If a Consultant makes a decision, and the patient questions the Consultant (how dare he?) the Consultant and hospital will inmediately get another two 'independent' consultants, to verify the Consultant has offered the right treatment or the right treatment available on the nhs (a dubious murky realm all of itself), and these Consultants at great cost to the nhs will do so without even needing to see the patient - their decision based solely on what has been 'fed' to them.
The patient on the other hand will have difficulty finding a Consultant to admit that the treatment offered is the wrong treatment or that alternative & better treatment is indeed available.
Of course if the patient has the money he can find another Consultant to deal with the condition - but that Consultant will still be adverse to testify the treatment offered by the nhs Consultant was not the 'only' treatment available or necessarily the right treatment.

As for the analogy of the broken bone sticking out of the arm, what I am saying is that even if it is evident the patient needs to be treated (and urgently) - if the Consultant & hospital (nhs trust) claim he has been treated - The Judge is not medically qualified to comment and must take the Consultant's (and hospital) claims as gospel truth. And the patient is highly unlikely to find a Consultant to testify against the first Consultant.
If the patient can afford to go privately and get treated - and get treatment- he is hardly going to be arguing in court about getting treatment.

There is a "take it or leave it" culture in health care and especially the nhs - imagine if the Consultant said the arm has to come off - and the patient feels he would not want to lose the arm but rather have it set in plaster cast.
The risk is that delays in treatment could result in the arm getting worse so that by the time the patient got to court it would have to come off.

And the argument that we do not want Consultants to treat more complicated conditions is a "red herring" - I am saying that doctors and hospitals should be more open about complications (with no liability) that conditions no matter how complex should be treated without fear of litigation. But that we should record ALL complications following surgery by surgeons in hospitals.

These can be the result of:
1) Complexity of condition
2) Poor patient condition
3) Poor quality surgery atthe time
4) Poor surgical skills of doctor

Dentists and NHS Dentists do no wish to undertake certain procedures which may result in further complications because the dentists are unable, unqualified (unskilled), orunwilling to undertake the procedure
a) Costs ...
b) Time element (higher costs)
b) Lack of dentist's skill

In these cases they will refer patients to a Consultant at Addenbrookes. The Consultant at Addenbrookes will complain that he is overwhelmed bu referrals, because in the ideal (not real) world nhs dentists should be able to deal with these procedures and any complications.

But in the real world if patients are being referred to the hospital, an alarm bell should go off in the Consultant's head that there is a difference between the reality and his ideal.
However if the Consultant instead of addressing the issue - and getting to the root of the cause or problem - decides to play dumb and blind, it is the patients who end up receiving poor quality and low standard dentistry.
Nobody enjoys losing teeth per se
And no one is HAPPY wearing dentures

And patients who have gone hip replacement are resigned @ the results.
Being 'resigned' should not be confused with being HAPPY with the results.
Patients awaiting hip replacement surgery are often so humbled by the pain and discomfort that anything is better than 'nothing'
But hip replacement surgery leaves as much to be desired as does losing your teeth unnecessarily (because of inability to pay and receive adequate dental treatment on time) and being forced to wear nhs dentures.

I don't understand why denture labs are in some far off to reach location - and not in a hospital - where the patient can be fitted, and any adjustments made in house.
Furthermore there is no justification for dental loss and the need for dentures in this day and age, except for extreme and freak trauma or accident

Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Hi Peter, Glad you liked the snow this week - Britain did look beautiful. Michelle

Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Thanks Quasar9 for your interesting comments. I have also noted your article about dental appointments on your own blog.
About medical expert witnesses - I have previously posted an article about the changes in the law regarding expert witnesses. These changes have been welcomed.
I am glad you liked the picture.

Clare said...

Do you think gratitude has to be directed at someone or something?

I keep what is often called a gratitude journal, but a lot of the things that I list every day don't come from a specific person. This makes me wonder if I am grateful, or if what I am feeling is better described as 'appreciation'.

I have noticed that people are more likely to be kind to you if you tell them that you have noticed and appreciated things they have done for you.

I wonder if describing my joy at a wonderful sunset or a fall of snow as 'gratitude' is flawed? Is the universe a conscious being and capable of accepting gratitude?

Then again, the more conscious effort I make to appreciate good things, the more good things happen. Is the universe behaving like a person after all; or am I just getting better at spotting good things.

Dr Michelle Tempest said...

Hi Clare, Thanks for that comment. I think you have a fantastic blog, called 'three beautiful things'. I think having appreciation is a wonderful way of putting it - for the purposes of this post, I was trying the catchy title - 'an attitude of gratitude'. Thanks. Michelle

SeaSpray said...

What an exquisite photograph! I would LOVE to take a walk there - right now.

I very much agree with your post.

I really, really do like your blog and am looking forward to catching up on old posts and also enjoying future posts. :)