Well, That Didn’t Hurt As Much As I Expected

Three weeks ago I was lying in a bed in the Coronary Care Unit of Glenfield Hospital, having had a heart attack (anterior myocardial infarction with severe stenosis of the Left Anterior Descending coronary artery, to be precise). I dialled 999 (the UK emergency service number) at 17:52; the paramedics arrived outside my home at 17:58. After thirty minutes or so of taking cardiograms and assessing my condition, they took me to the Glenfield CCU.

Less than forty minutes later I had received an angioplasty. That’s where they put a stent in the blocked artery and stick a little balloon in there and blow it up to unblock it. I also got to watch it in X-Ray on the monitors and listen to the cardiologist’s running commentary to his students, which was awesome: you can’t beat geeking out on somebody describing exactly how they’re saving your life in real time.

With that done I was feeling right as rain again. (Slightly righter actually, but I think that was the morphine.)

The only reason I’m mentioning this here is to let you know that if you ever have a heart attack in Leicester, you’ll be taken to the best possible place in the UK to get it fixed. The department at Glenfield is awesome, and so are our paramedics. In fact, if you suspect you might be going to have a heart attack in the near future, I would recommend taking short-term accommodation in Leicester and putting 999 on speed dial. It might just save your life.

Oh, one more reason. Those American politicians who opposed plans to reform health care in the USA were a bunch of lying shills when they denigrated the United Kingdom’s National Health Service. Less than ninety minutes after phoning for an ambulance, I had undergone an angioplasty without anybody asking me to prove that I had so much as a penny in my pocket, and was being taken to a ward where I would be cared for and my status would be monitored and I would receive whatever treatment I required and be fed and watered until I was in a fit state to leave (which was two days later). If any of those politicians wants to come over here and run down the NHS to my face, I will gladly punch them so hard in theirs that they can find out just how wrong they are at the local A&E department.

The NHS is for life, not just for politics.