The Digging

Before my Friday Fictioneer submission, a rant: I’ve just spent five days in an NHS hospital. Not quite a five star hotel, maybe not even three, but efficient, caring, and a good place to be if you’ve got a broken hip. Shortly before discharge I learnt that a lot of the nurses and therapists are on zero hours contracts – after all their training they do not have job security and they are not receiving a regular steady income. No wonder there’s such a high level of resignations and overwork and stress amongst those who remain.

As a large chunk of the hospital workforce is made up of immigrants and migrant workers, we should remind ourselves that the government is talking about introducing rules that would mitigate against lower-waged workers entering the country. So just who is going to do the work when that happens?

End of rant; here’s my story:


Image copyright: Connie Gayer

Image copyright: Connie Gayer

The Prime Minister was handed a silver spade for the cutting-the-turf ceremony. His Wellingtons looked smart enough for the Bullingdon Club.

“Big smiles,” called out the photographers. “Over here,” pleaded a camera man.

His make-up girl applied a bit of powder, smoothed over his hair. The spin doctor chatted casually to a pack of editors.

A scruffy young man with old-fashioned notebook and pen called out, “Another new hospital for the NHS, sir?”

Everyone looked aghast.

The PM smirked. “No, you idiot, I’m digging its grave. Who wants a public health system when there are fat profits to be made?”


Written in response to the weekly 100 word challenge put out by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Friday Fictioneers, to be found here.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

37 Responses to The Digging

  1. I just love it when we can use a 100 words as a PSA! Hope you are on the mend.

  2. If I started to say everything I felt and thought here it would be its own blog post. So I’ll just say see you on the barricades.
    Hope you recover soon.

  3. Glad you’re on the mend after your injury. It’s always sad when governments don’t work for the people. One elderly man in the U.S. some years back couldn’t figure out whether to buy his medicine or food. My husband told him to buy food. He’d last longer if he didn’t starve. Actually it’s possible to find free food some places if you’re not too proud, but not free drugs. I’ve read also that the NHS couldn’t work without the immigrants. There would go your NHS. Then see how long certain officials would last. Well done, Patrick. — Suzanne

    • Food is the right answer in those circumstances, I agree.
      We are so lucky with the NHS and so worried that the concept of free medicine at the point of delivery will be eroded and is based on clinical need and not on ability to pay.
      Every country should have this.

  4. Sadly current and true. The ideoligical butchery that is being performed on all our public services in the name of “austerity” is criminal.

  5. gahlearner says:

    Good story. Similar issues seem to come up everywhere. Mammon rules.

  6. Sounds like America.

  7. rgayer55 says:

    I guess the keyboard really is mightier than the spade. The Pharmaceutical companies are the ones who are really making a killing here. You can’t watch a thirty minute TV show without seeing six drug advertisements. Sooner or later, they’re bound to kill us one way or another.

  8. Dear Patrick,

    I hope you’re on the mend. Nothing ailing in your writing. Well done and to the point.



  9. I do not think that would work here… we get the politicians we deserve. After all they usually follow through on promises…

  10. Margaret says:

    Public health is such an important area. I can’t understand why it’s so hard to get it right. Well told. All the best for your recovery.

  11. ceayr says:

    Bravo, Patrick, you depict the current slime ball and his policies to perfection.

  12. Sandra says:

    Sorry about your hip Patrick, that must be painful and frustrating. Good story. We must be lucky where we live, I’ve nothing but praise and admiration for the way our health service (both GP and hospital) is run. But I agree that successive governments of either persuasion seem to have failed to address the really problematic areas.

  13. I understand your concerns about healthcare. I hope you and your hip are on the mend. Follow your doctor’s orders please.

  14. te he… great take on the prompt! 🙂

  15. Dale says:

    Heal well. Good story…

  16. Glad you are now home after a broken hip! Heal quickly and well.
    Your story covers a hot, controversial issue. Thanks fro reminding us who it is that matters.

  17. ansumani says:

    An outspoken PM!!! …like our Mr. Trump here across the pond? The issue of health care is so controversial and government involvement never seems to help.

I'd love to read what you think ...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s