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13SICK National Home Doctors Service
Words by Deborah O'Ferry
"Miss Polly had a dolly who was sick, sick, sick..."
We all know this one. It's one of those relentless rhymes that get stuck in your head.
"So she called for the doctor to come quick, quick, quick..."
I think it was this line that always fascinated me as a child. That you could call for a doctor and they'd come to your house. Your actual house. When we were sick, we went to this golden coloured medical centre in the middle of a main street. It had a free lolly machine which eased the annoyingness of not being at home playing just because my stupid brother got sick. If it were the weekend or night you just had to be sick and hope ENO really was the answer my mum assured us it would be. I thought, as a kid, that the idea of a doctor actually coming to your house was quite laughable. A quaint, old fashioned idea but so Hollywood.
As a parent, the idea of going to the doctors can be pretty arduous. The wait is always long. The magazines are always old. The kids always get testing. The other sick people are off putting, and hoping the appointment falls within a meal or nap gap is useless. But going on the weekend or to after-hours at the hospital? That gives a feeling of absolute doom.
Wouldn't it be awesome if we didn't need to do that and a doctor could just come to us? In our actual homes.
Well...we DO have that. And it's pretty awesome.
13SICK National Home Doctor Service
I've used it three wonderful times and it meant the difference in my husband actually getting medical advice for something he'd otherwise 'man up' for and let get worse, it meant because of a long and dull story that my daughter could go to a birthday party, and it meant not having to sit in an emergency waiting room in the middle of winter with my tired and sick son. For my friend who recommended it, it meant she didn't have to wrangle her son who has special needs as well as her sick daughter.
If people can't drive, if people are too frail, if people have kids, or if people don't, the service is an exceptional one which is not given enough light. But now, it won't have any.
You see, we won't see it mentioned anymore. The Government isn't stopping the Home Doctor Service. They wouldn't stop a service that is obviously respectable and well used, instead they've just stopped funding the marketing of it. But what happens when we forget about a business and stop using it?
So we need to be better than the marketing. As lovely and talented as those people probably were, we have to be more successful if we want this service in our future. Luckily for us, people power is the biggest voter. So, people, we need to use the service, spread the word about it and toot it's horn, or the idea of a doctor coming to our home, bulk-billed at that, will be another thing of the past and Miss Polly and her Dolly will have to get on down to their local Emergency waiting bay and hope for the best.
Deborah O'Ferry is a mother of two. She attempts community work by day and staying calm by night, as she trips about in the crazy and beautiful world of parenting. Writing is her way of staying sane and she hopes to reach other tired parents by being honest about her own not-always-successful experiences and try to level out the ideas of perfect parenting to just trying to be good people. You can follow Deborah at Deborah O'Ferry on Facebook.
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