Opinion: Mandie has nothing but praise for Forth Valley’s NHS doctors and nurses

As I stand stand together with four nurses in the oncology ward in Forth Valley Royal Hospital, my heart bursts with pride.

By Mandie Malcolm
Friday, 29th May 2020, 7:30 am

As I stand stand together with four nurses in the oncology ward in Forth Valley Royal Hospital, my heart bursts with pride.

Not only pride, I feel safe, very well cared for and have genuinely developed a great bond with the oncology nurses and breast cancer consultants.

I guess after living with secondary cancer for nearly five years I naturally have got to know this incredible team who look after myself and so many other patients

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Through my cancer journey being diagnosed, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery, mammograms, CT scans, MRI scans, monthly appointments for treatment, I have spent a lot of hours in the hospital and GP’s surgery.

I am a big supporter of the Clap for our Carers, key workers and NHS on a Thursday at 8pm. The ‘‘Thank you’’ T-shirt I am wearing in my picture has grown to be popular with the proceeds of the money being donated to the NHS to help fight Covid 19.

The key workers continue each day to travel into work, therefore putting themselves in danger being in the front line and then, in turn, possibly putting their own family in danger.

They have continued to provide first class, professional services under huge pressure.

Prior to my cancer diagnosis the only exposure I had to the hospital was when visiting sick grandparents and I had unfortunately not the best experience when my papa, Frank, was admitted and passed away.

I put this down to perhaps the specific ward he was admitted to and a handful of the nurses who failed to show basic skills of caring or respect.

This stuck in my mind and I was petrified of the hospital and disappointed. Now after being a regular every month in oncology for five years I can honestly say I can’t sing their praises enough.

I am treated with kindness, fantastic care and the nurses and consultants genuinely care about each of their patients. They are a fantastic bunch of people and I have great confidence in them.

I feel incredibly lucky to have Forth Valley Royal Hospital on my doorstep.

My current treatment is injections into my stomach and buttocks and an infusion but the nurses make the treatment that bit more bearable by chatting to me and genuinely being nice to me. I leave the appointment feeling really quiteuplifted. Thank you NHS, you do an incredible job and I will forever be appreciative of this.

The latest string to my bow is that I have learned to plant some pots for my back garden and look after them.

Gardening is something I know absolutely nothing about but after the help from my gran showing me what to do virtually, I am now the proud owner of gorgeous colourful begonias, petunias, marigolds and lavender. Hopefully I will have learned even more new skills as we live through the phased easing of the lockdown.

Stay safe and appreciate the good things you have and that light at the end of the tunnel is beginning to show.