Beyond the Bedpan throws its considerable weight behind Margaret Haywood, waves a patronising finger at the NMC, and is dumbfounded by a ‘tanorexic’
Every so often a story comes along with such an obvious dividing line between right and wrong, where the good is so good, and the bad so stupid, that it’s impossible to sit on the fence.
For good, read Margaret Haywood, the whistleblowing nurse who exposed the atrocious standards of care being inflicted on elderly patients at the Royal Sussex Hospital in Brighton. In the bad corner, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, who rewarded Ms Haywood by striking her from the nursing register, bringing an abrupt end to a distinguished 20-year nursing career and leaving Ms Haywood with no discernable livelihood. If you’re not outraged yet, watch this:
One might argue that there are better ways to report bad practice that having it broadcast on national television. But Ms Haywood is adamant that she had no choice. Her managers wouldn’t listen, Panorama would.
As far as the NMC was concerned, nothing justifies a breach of paient confidentiality, not even exposing care failures.
The nursing profession rose as one to defend her, with politicians, doctors and the BBC adding their outrage to the pile. There was also an RCN appeal, and a petition attracting over 25,000 signatures. The end result, with more than a whiff of inevitability, was Ms Haywood being reinstated to the profession this week. There’s a lesson in there, somewhere.
On the topic of nurses reinstated, but without the professional ethics, the Lying Down Game gang are also back at work. Bless.
A tan too far
Compassion, restraint, empathy - all essential qualities for a good nurse. So Beyond the Bedpan would like to take its proverbial hat off to the nurse that featured on this week’s How to Look Good Naked.
It featured salon-owner Jane, a self-confessed ‘tanorexic’ who’s appetite for golden skin is sated only by injecting herself with the unlicensed and almost definitely dangerous ‘Melanotan’. Gok Wan’s team were swiftly dispatched to make her love herself as nature intended, and without the orange glow.
But first to the hospital, where the nurse on duty showed remarkable restraint by steadfastly refusing to say something like “Of COURSE you’re going to get cancer you psycho! And for what? You look like a pint of Tango.”
Instead, she opted for gentle reassurance, and noted with mild concern that the poor woman did indeed have a lot of new moles, might want to see a consultant dermatologist, and should probably stop injecting unregulated substances into her veins. The programme looked her up six weeks later, and was depressed to discover that she was still using Melanotan, and still sporting the complexion of smoked salmon. There’s no helping some people.