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Interview 17 - Heart failure

Age at interview: 81
Age at diagnosis: 79
Brief Outline: Retired works manager; married with 2 children.
Background: 1994 angina. Heart attacks 1994 and 2001. Heart failure diagnosed 2001.

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Suggests that doctors need to make time for patients to ask questions.

Suggests that doctors need to make time for patients to ask questions.

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Yes, I think that today, going back on when I was in hospital in '47, that over the years there has been a closer, far closer co-operation between doctor and patient, and nurse and patient, than ever there was, but it's got to be even better. And I feel that if the doctors, I know again they're under pressure, they've got a big volume of work to do and they can't spend too much time with a particular person, but if they could make that small amount of time they have count, by answering a question, allowing a question to be asked. Because in some cases, some patients who are rather timid will not ask. Now I would because that's part of my makeup but those that are timid can be reassured on certain aspects or if they've got a weak heart, 'what do you mean a weak heart?' 'How's it affecting me personally?' and 'Should I do this?' 'Should I carry on living like this?'

We know that you have this aftercare and we know that you get this little booklets and things like that but it's not the same as the doctor or the consultant at the point of being sent home, telling you the main operative things or answering a question. 'Are there any questions you'd like to ask me?', providing it's not long, they may have to readjust the whole thinking but I think that won't take place until we have more doctors, more nurses, more places, and people have got more time to do what they would like to do.
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