Ockey Elf would like to introduce himself and hopes to be able to lighten your dark and dismal days with oodles of wit and experience from the challenging, but never boring, world of occupational health.
Readers should expect pearls of wisdom, a sometimes ‘jaundiced’ viewpoint overlayed with lashings of far from palatable but thought-provoking home truths, which as readers will no doubt be aware, is not always pleasant, but good for us nonetheless.
Recently rescued from a dusty corner of a soon-to-be-demolished factory (somewhere in the frozen North), I was whisked from a life of obscurity, knitting and sticking on the occasional Elastoplast, to give you all the benefit of my extensive knowledge in treating the sick and workshy of the UK – and not a moment too soon, I say.
What on earth is going on in Westminster? That’s what I’d like to know. Gordon presents us with a new Cabinet and we find ourselves with an ex-postman as the minister for health. Whatever next? I’m Alan Johnson is familiar with the Manual Handling of Loads Regulations (those post bags can be pretty heavy), but anything else – forget it.
Next thing you know, we’ll have a rheumatologist as the national director for occupational health.
Let’s just hope ‘Postman Pat’ can do something PDQ about nurses’ salaries. A recent advert for a deputy chief nursing officer post quoted a starting salary of £53,000.
‘Shocking’ and ‘disgraceful’ are two words that spring to mind. No wonder healthcare standards, particularly infection control, are so bad. Pay peanuts and you won’t get Kim and Aggie, or another Flo, come to that.
Ockey’s top priority for the months ahead, as Gordon’s personal adviser for health at work issues, is to get the words ‘occupational health’ on everyone’s lips, ‘cos Ockey believes in speaking out.