A NORTH Shields globetrotter has hailed the NHS as ‘the best in the world’ after receiving over 70 years of healthcare.
Patrick Mayne, 71, of North Tyneside, paid tribute to the NHS ahead of its 72nd birthday on Sunday July 5.
Diagnosed with Polio at the age of one Patrick, who was born in Belfast in 1949, just one year after the NHS was introduced, has spent the last 70 years receiving first-hand experience of the healthcare system.
“I spent 6 months in hospital in an iron lung when I was one and had my first operation on my right ankle when I was just nine years-old,” said Patrick.
“Since then I have had three major operations; on my shoulder, spine and hip, been an inpatient for two months in traction, with a lumbar corset on my back, and have been treated for diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis and hyperthyroidism.
“I’d class my NHS journey in three stages; the care I received in my childhood was excellent, I had mixed experiences during my mid to late years but since I returned to the UK in 2017 it had been absolutely perfect – I manged to register with a GP straight away and have even signed up to online services.”
Patrick, a retired actuary who worked in South Africa for 17 years, is a member of the North Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group Patient Forum and uses his experiences of the NHS to help inform decisions made by local healthcare commissioners.
“I am a real advocate of the NHS and feel passionately that being a part of the Patient Forum is essential in having the patients voice heard,” added Patrick.
“The improvements to healthcare over the last few years have been fantastic and the NHS reaction to Covid-19 has been absolutely superb – I’ve had two appointments with my GP since lockdown, one over the phone and one via e-mail, which have been perfect for me due to my limited mobility and I have made my views known, quite strongly, that I would like appointments to continue this way post Covid.
“The NHS has a ten year plan and if it manages to fulfil its vision for the future then it will continue to be by far the very best healthcare system in the whole world – Happy 72nd birthday NHS.”