Friday, September 21, 2007

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Posted by Picasa

Posted by Picasa


Last summer Northwestern's Council of 100, (which I describe as the one hundred most successful women ever to graduate from Northwestern University -- who are willing to go to those meetings) gave a party for undergraduates and young alumnae at Cafe Roma in the heart of Beverly Hills' golden triangle. Here are some pictures of the event. I invite everyone who was there to write a comment and/or a picture caption.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

More on the Dreaded British National Health

My cousin Cecile wrote: "Had an exciting experience with the British National Health Service. On our last night in London, I went into anaphylactic shock in the middle of the night with hives on every inch of my body including palms and soles. When my tongue began to swell and I could no longer speak clearly, I tried without success to remember the emergency phone number in England. (They were staying in a borrowed flat.) I finally hit on it 15 minutes later and, with some difficulty, the ambulance got close enough to our building for us to find it by its flashing lights. Right in the ambulance they gave me intravenous antihistamine, oxygen, a nebulizer and epinephrine.

15 minutes later the symptoms were clearly being reduced and I could speak normally again. Did you know that all emergency treatment is free? It's also caring and thoughtfully given. Yes, we made the plane, but my poor husband aged a few years watching me go through it all.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Braving the Dreaded National Health Service UK

Braving the Dreaded British National Health

A couple of weeks ago in Edinburgh, I fell and scraped my knee. I week later the little abrasion had become large, red, puffy, and sore. I wanted someone to look at it, but I was still in the UK. Not only was I in the UK, I was in small-town England. Bury St. Edmunds is a charming, historic market village in East Anglia, but not exactly a medical hub. Still, my knee needed looking after.

The hotel manager told me there was a doctor’s office next door, so with trepidation, (I’d heard the horror stories about long waits and grim conditions) I ventured in. A receptionist told me I’d be seen by a nurse practitioner who specialized in abrasions, asthma treatment, and other chronic conditions. Apologizing, she said she’d have to charge me fifty pounds since I wasn’t registered on National Health.

After waiting in a pleasant waiting room for all of seven to ten minutes, I was greeted by a friendly, efficient nurse who bandaged my knee with a waterproof surgical dressing and asked if I was otherwise in good health. My husband mentioned I have asthma. She gave me advice on how to manage it and a booklet (not an advertisement from a drug company) but a manual published by the National Health Service NHS with clear information on how to manage asthma along with a card to carry in your wallet, outlining a treatment plan, and phone numbers including the Asthma UK Adviceline available from 9 to 5 with interpreting service in more than 100 languages and a 24 hour nurse-led helpline for all medical inquiries along with websites and further information.

We were out of there and on our way in half an hour and I’m happy to report my knee is fine.