Hospital is becoming a too familiar environment

2nd August 2015: Sydney, Australia

My eyes opened this morning to the type of pain I have come to understand requires immediate attention. I opted to attend the local hospital, opposed to being naive, and simply numbing the pain with medication. Luckily, to my relief scans revealed the pain stemmed from a small collection of fluid and internal bleeding, a fairly typical outcome for the surgery. On reflection, I possibly overreacted, however, the peace of mind is priceless. Furthermore, the circumstances reinforced the need to cease current attempts at weaning off my pain-relief medication.

As noted yesterday, I commenced a course of Cannabis Oil as a means of working I’m conjunction with my Chemotherapy to ensure I remain Cancer free, and currently it seems there are other advantages in taking the oil. Most notably, the alertness remaining in my thinking and interactions throughout the day. Moreover, I am not feeling heavily sedated or having a sense of loosing a degree of control over my behaviours and actions. Obviously, I acknowledge it is very early in my three month trial, and the primary goal will be difficult to gauge, however, admittedly, I am very pleased with the outcomes thus far, and hope for similar feelings to be experienced over the coming months. To conclude, I would encourage those to comment on my recent decision, regardless of whether they agree or disagree. Personally, the most important aspect of this is to connect with others to hopefully support others who are yet to face the battle some of have already encountered.

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Are patients empowered during their hospital stay?

14th July 2015: Westmeed Hospital, Sydney, Australia

I honestly believe the compounding events have resulted in a sense of me feeling like I have lost my voice. For instance, is it ok to not have a warm water when showering? Is it ok to simply submit to the nurses when trying to administer drugs you do not wish to take? Is it ok discard the lecture provided yesterday about having Liver Cancer as just a mistake?

Maybe some leeway is needed on the latter point, however, I strongly feel my input seems to have been removed from most, if not all decisions recently made regarding my health. Furthermore, when putting the circumstances into context, it seems the level of care does not reflect the situation for someone living in Australia with premium private health care. The conundrum then becomes one pondering the type of circumstances for many of those in a less fortunate position. I acknowledge how fortunate I am to have private health care, however, if I feel a loss in my input, then I am curious about the capacity for people to voice their opinion when severely impaired, lacking in support, discriminated against or simply overwhelmed by their circumstances?

To conclude, I hold grave doubts about the intentions behind certain policies when the focus is meant to foster empowerment in people, however, conversely the reality seems to ultimately result in people losing control over their own health. I would greatly appreciate words and other experiences to collate information as a means of gauging the current systems governing us?