For the first time since we arrived here five years ago, I had occasion to use Scarborough General Hospital this week. My 2 year old daughter managed (I'm kicking myself, believe me!) to get hold of my Bazooka Verruca (that's plantar wart treatment to those of you not familiar with the brand name). It's 26% salycillic acid - the strong version - and I applied it after getting out of the bath Monday evening and must have forgotten to put it back in my (locked!) Medical Cabinet. Normally, please understand, I'm the first to hold my hand up and admit I'm not the worlds' best parent - but nor am I the worst and this was nothing more than an oversight on my part. I'm sure we've all done things along the same lines. Sadly, the first I realised was on Tuesday afternoon when Neevie came running towards me with it in her hand screaming and clawing at her mouth. As it turns out, she'd not actually swallowed any, (not that we knew that at the time) but in typical two-year-old fashion, she'd used her teeth to get the lid off so it'd gone on to her tongue and burned in several places. A frantic call to my Doctor followed - the excellent Camile Mohamed - and she advised me to go straight to A&E at Scarborough. We arrived there and went straight into Triage, where the nurse on duty saw us immediately. Within ten minutes - I kid you not - we'd been seen by the nurse, assessed by a doctor, had our case referred to a paediatrician who advised us exactly what was going on. Neevie was put onto a drip, had all her vitals done at regular intervals and although they agreed that it was unlikely that she'd actually swallowed any, they insisted on observing her for a full 24 hours. We were taken to the very basic, but comfortable paediatrics ward and I couldn't fault the nurses, doctors, general staff or anyone we encountered on the way. Granted it's not technologically advanced and the equipment is looking a little tatty, but they couldn't do enough for us. There were about six other children in there, and they were all attended to very well by the nurses. They appointed us a Social Worker - apparently standard practice for any accidents involving children. If it means that one abused / neglected / mistreated child is spared, that's fine by me. It wasn't an experience I ever hope to repeat, but I understand - and accept - their reasons for doing so!
God forbid you should ever find yourself in the unfortunate position of having to go to Scarborough Gen., but rest assured, if you do, what it lacks in comfort, it makes up for with good intention. That's probably scant comfort to parents (in particular) who need to know their child is going to be given the ultimate in available care, but while I was there, I firmly believe that Neevie was in good hands from the moment I called Camile until the moment we were discharged (Wednesday evening). We were allowed to stay with her the whole time, and they provided a comfortable reclining chair so I could sit alongside her for the duration. She was given meals and offered drinks, and there's a little kiosk outside which sells basic provisions for any parents.
The point of this is not that I'm trying to hard-sell Scarborough Gen - far from it - I hope no-one has any cause to use it whilst they're here - but it's not the scary, backstreet clinic that, to be honest, I'd pictured in my minds' eye.
And as for Camile Mohamed.... she's great. If ANYONE has any reason to need a GP while they're here, I can thoroughly recommend her.