From initial symptoms of depression to admission to a mental health unit 10 days later via the crisis team, depression ripped the rug out from under my feet and emptied my whole being. I have been completely disabled and incapacitated by this illness.
Repeatedly this Government has opted for short-term decisions which will cost the health service much, much more in years to come. The Government's failure to give NHS trusts the resources they need has pushed the finances of the provider sector close to the cliff edge.
Since the Government announced the withdrawal of student funding for would-be nurses last year, we are already hearing of a 20% drop in applications for graduate nursing courses. And the 1% pay cap on salaries is not helping to encourage people into nursing and is making existing nurses reconsider whether they can even afford to continue. If the NHS wants to achieve a clean bill of health, we need to ensure there is adequate staffing, funding, resource and education. The health of the nation is at stake.
It's not too late for both to turn back, to start to talk about positive news, to express understanding for the difficult job both do, to seek to educate and explain and engage with the public both are meant to serve. Here's hoping they will. But with Trump now taking office it looks certain to get worse before it gets better.
My primary purpose here is, as a patient, to join calls, like those made by the 75 leading health experts to Theresa May on 11th January, for radical solutions to the break-down of our health and care system. It is not a problem for us that can wait for some utopian answer in 2020. Let's accept that we'll die - but avoid the unacceptable shortcut of the sirens' road towards euthanasia, the cheap solution.
To the NHS, I hope this finds you well. I know you've had some bad press of late so I just wanted to see you how you're feeling and let you know that despite your troubles, I'm still your number one fan.
I will be campaigning to be selected Labour candidate for Stoke Central to advocate for our NHS in Stoke and that the NHS crisis not be swept under the carpet and inaction continue. Our campaign will deliver a key message that Labour is here to fight, Labour is listening and Labour cares and will take positive action. That is the defining difference.
Radio 5Live chose to mark "Blue Monday" by questioning the prescription of antidepressants and whether or not they are overused. Anyone who has live...
Including Christmas sales, estimates suggest that around 53 million fitness trackers will have been sold in 2016. It's a staggering amount and a figure which, as the CEO of a sport and leisure trust and a former athlete, should fill me with joy. After all, how amazing is it that all these people are taking such a proactive approach to their health and fitness?
90% of patient care in the NHS happens in general practice and yet general practice only receives around 10% of the NHS budget. This cost efficiency is what allows the NHS to consistently be among the best healthcare systems in the world (as independently assessed by the US based Commonwealth Fund year after year) on a relative shoestring.
I haven't blogged for a while. The reason will shock our esteemed Prime Minister. It's because I've been a bit busy - see Mrs May, I'm a GP. So waking up on Saturday to hear your briefing to the press suggesting that I am to blame for the current crisis in the NHS, and that you will 'order' me and all my colleagues to be open 7 days a week, 8am to 8pm, made me pick up my laptop.
Let us not mince words. The crisis engulfing the NHS is neither a political nor economic issue, it is an issue of class.
Kadcyla is a wonder drug, keeping my lung tumours stable and healing the cancerous tumours in my spine to a point where there is No Evidence of Active Disease. I know others who've had similar amazing results, enabling them to return to work, care for their families, and contribute to society at large.
What's happening in the NHS right now is no laughing matter of course, but if feels like a similar corrective is needed. There is no 'winter crisis' in the NHS. What the NHS is facing - and has been for some time - requires no prefix. It is simply a crisis.
The truth that Blue Monday gives us an opportunity to talk about is that we all have mental health and that there are steps we can take all year round to protect it. The major risk factors for mental ill-health, poverty, trauma, loneliness, ongoing stress and physical ill-health, are not confined to one day, let alone one month.
The reality now for doctors is that we are often forced to choose to prioritise one patient over another, and we have found ourselves having to treat patients on the wrong ward or having to delay their care as we simply don't have the room or staff for them.