Blocking a bedBMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7122.1628 (Published 13 December 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:1628
- Colin Douglas, doctor and novelist
A long time ago, when the NHS was younger and quite a lot of things worked quite well, there were ways of getting things done. If a toilet was blocked you got a plumber. If a bed was blocked you got a geriatrician. In theory it was all quite simple, though it had to be said that our plumbing colleagues probably had a higher success rate.
It really was a long time ago. I was a locum registrar in geriatric medicine, back in my teaching hospital after a couple of years wandering, and the doctor on the phone who was upset about the blocked bed was new to me. He worked in the poisons unit. He too was a locum, one …