During her 50 years as a psychologist, Pam has studied and practiced hypnosis in order to help people with their problems. Her work and research into the fascinating area of self-hypnosis has resulted in an important technique for promoting personal change.

Post No. 21: Anecdotes and Apocrypha: Bill Peach and Nurse Ratched (Pt. 1)

Home/Pam Young/Post No. 21: Anecdotes and Apocrypha: Bill Peach and Nurse Ratched (Pt. 1)

Post No. 21: Anecdotes and Apocrypha: Bill Peach and Nurse Ratched (Pt. 1)

I just read an article about a woman trapped in a public hospital trying to transfer to a private hospital for which she had full cover. I decided to write about Bill’s experience shortly before he died.

Before I do I should tell you that Nurse Ratched is Jack Nicholson’s nemesis in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”.

Bill was having the occasional emergency dash to hospital by ambulance.

He was always taken to the public ward, not the private hospital for which he had full cover.

He complained once that for 29 hours they had kept him on a sloping ironing board, poking at him every so often to see if he was (1) alive, and if so (2) awake.

The ambos were always fantastic, there are not enough superlatives to do them justice, but it was another story after he was deposited. I don’t blame the hospital system, I blame the chronic, ideological and deliberate underfunding by our egregious right-wing government, egged on by the I.P.A., Murdoch, Miss Piggy and Twiggy and their other henchmen, and the baying shock-jocks.

On this occasion, which turned out to be his final hospital admission, he was eventually settled into a 4-bed room. He had been through this before for short periods of time and had experienced considerable difficulty going to the toilet. His normal toilet procedure was prolonged and S.M. Herald-accompanied. His bowels could not cope with the competition so he had to wait till he was home to finally let nature take its course.

This time he was in there almost two weeks. He was in torment: his bowels protesting, his sleep reduced to almost nil. Bill suffered from insomnia at the best of times, but one of the other patients was dying and making dying noises, another snored loudly and continuously and the other one yelled all night.

Every day he would ask to be transferred to the private hospital, for which he had full cover. He would be told “no problem”. Every night he would be told it was not possible to be transferred to the private hospital the following day. One time they said it was full, other times no explanation at all. He was made an offer to be transferred to a private hospital at Liverpool, but he wanted the one about 5 minutes away from where he was in the north shore, a few suburbs away from his home in Mosman.

(More next time)

About the Author:

I will soon be 81 years old and tickled pink to be still upright. I have a good life. I still see clients, mainly in their own homes. I attend a lot of congresses, conferences and training sessions (never too old to learn). My apartment sits across from the north end of Maroubra Beach with 270 deg. views. There is always something intriguing to gaze at – the whales and dolphins twice a year, the stand-up paddle boarders, the surfers, the walkers, the beautiful surf in all its moods. Every morning two lorikeets come for their wholemeal bread. I often sit on the balcony and cook lunch on my portable grill, sitting amongst pots of lettuce, spinach, eggplant, tomatoes, chillies, and herbs: French tarragon, bayleaf, basil, rosemary, oregano, marjoram, thyme, mint and parsley. Throw a handful of herbs on every meal. My wonderful son has an equally lovely wife and three sons, 18, 16 and 14. They are the joy of my life as are my many good friends (some dating back to primary school) and colleagues. I was divorced, and later had two very dear partners, now deceased. One of them was Bill Peach; many of you may remember him. I was with him for 15 years until he died in 2013. He infected me with the travel bug, with many overseas and domestic Journeys taking place each year. The other long-term relationship left me with a taste for champagne, good wine, gourmet food and the Opera. Most of my life I have played tennis and golf, surfed (even in winter) and skied overseas and locally. Slowing down a bit now, love to see a film and do cryptic crosswords and sudoko. Passionate about bridge. I feel I have been very fortunate and would like to continue in that vein. Fingers crossed.