Injured Soldiers Deserve More Says Beefys Mum


Hanging around at reception while visiting a major *ahem* defence contractor (don't ask), this caught my eye in the local rag:


Good on you, Mrs Botham.

Full text in case the internet in Yeovil gets stolen by chavs with bad haircuts and fat girlfriends so you can't follow the link:

A Former nurse who helped more than 100 prisoners of war back to health has launched a campaign for military personnel to receive better medical treatment.

The last specialist military facility, Haslan Navy Hospital in Gosport, was closed in March, and wounded soldiers are now having to return from war zones having to seek treatment under the NHS.

However, Marie Botham, of Combe Street Lane, Yeovil, has teamed up with the local branch of the Royal British Legion to call for more services and a specialist military facility capable of coping with their unique needs.

Mrs Botham, the mother of cricketing legend Ian, worked for High Royds Hospital, Meston, Yorkshire during the final days of the World War Two. After two years of dealing with wounded soldiers, the war was over and in 1945, she was faced with the prospect of dealing with a massive influx of war prisoners liberated from the Germans. She spent months nursing them back to full health. She also worked as a nurse at Haslan in 1946-47.

She said: "When one reads how British forces who are wounded are being treated, why not use Haslan?

"I can look back and feel proud how we nursed and helped the forces. In 1945, we had a convoy of our boys - they had been prisoners who were on the forced march through Germany. How would they have coped in an NHS hospital with patients who would have no idea what they had been through?"

As part of her campaign, she has written to a number of local MP's and spoken to Yeovil mayor Tony Lock. She has also enlisted the help of the Yeovil branch of the Royal British Legion.

She has kept a scrapbook which include stories about injured troops returning from Iraq and Afghanistan are suffering neglect on NHS wards.

Thousands more have serious mental health problems but find themselves placed on lengthy waiting lists.

Mrs Botham said: "This really concerns me. As I was a nurse during the war, I know what I am talking about. They do not want to be in a ward with civilians who do not know what they have been through both medically and mentally."

Last year, Mrs Botham released details of an autograph book soldiers used to illustrate their experiences in the Western Gazette. As she spent the months nursing them back to full health, she left her autograph book on the table every day and invited contributions from patients.

Many were marked with their date of capture and release and included a picture tribute to the Red Cross described as "the reason we came back alive." The contributions included a barbed-wire view of a German PoW camp; thoughts on acquiring freedom; and numerous cartoon mock-ups of Hitler, Winston Churchill and Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery.

The chairman of Royal British Legion Yeovil Branch William Brown said: "There are wide questions to be asked of the NHS. These specifically relate to on-going treatment for veterans, and waiting times, particularly for reservists and those who have been medically discharged.

"The Government has delegated priority setting within the NHS to a local level, while at the same time centrally promising service personnel a high standard of lifelong care if they are injured as a result of their service. The reality is that NHS Trusts simply cannot deliver on this promise. This is the challenge facing Government at the moment and it might be time to go back to the drawing board."

Weston Gazette 15:00 - 07 June 2007
Full marks to Mrs Beefy.
Zero marks to the mong who wrote the article. Haslan Navy Hospital? Obviously couldn't be arrsed to do any research whatsoever.

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