News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

Health scare prompts important conversations

Health scare prompts important conversations

Allan is an average kind of bloke – loves cars, being at the beach and fishing most of all. In November he did something a lot of men his age do. He had a heart attack.

There was no dramatic clutching of the chest or gasping for breath, it was pretty low key says Allan, just a burning sensation in his chest, a dry throat and a painful jaw over a few days.

At first the 58-year-old thought he had an infection and went to his GP. Soon afterwards he was on his way to Tauranga Hospital in an ambulance but, after arriving, began feeling better.

“I felt like a bit of a fraud for taking up a bed in a busy hospital,” says Allan. “I thought I should go home. But blood tests were showing I’d had a heart attack and was exactly where I needed to be.”

Allan admits he was scared and nervous, worrying about what this meant long-term. It focussed him on having some much-needed conversations.

“My worry was had I had enough conversations with my wife about what’s important? Had I said enough things so that life would go on for others if I wasn’t there?”

Allan recalls his experience as Advance Care Planning Day, on Thursday 5 April, approaches. The day, previously known as Conversations that Count Day, is a day to encourage people to think about, talk about, and plan for their future and end-of-life care.

Allan said speaking to his wife about what he wanted if things went horribly wrong was liberating.

“It was actually a relief to talk about those things. To stop that internal monologue about what’s going on by being able to talk to somebody about your fears and concerns. I think it was quite therapeutic. It’s important to talk to people you love about what matters to you.

“It’s good to have that conversation about what you would like ahead of time. It’s not just for you - it’s for the peace of mind of the people you love.”

And now, Allan is back fishing and being at the beach. He says men his age shouldn’t wait for a heart attack to talk about what’s important to them with their whānau – “get off your backside and do it now!” He’s in the process of writing his own Future Care Plan.

For more information about Future (Advance) Care Planning, talk to your GP or Practice Nurse, go to www.advancecareplanning.org.nz

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Preview: Your Heart Looks Like A Vagina By Dominic Hoey

Dominic Hoey’s one-man show Your Heart Looks Like a Vagina, is a dark comedy about the joys of living with autoimmune disease. This one man show will bring together Dominic Hoey’s long career as a performance poet and writer and the experimental theatre experience of Director Nisha Madhan.. More>>

Let The Games Begin: PM Sends Best Wishes To Athletes

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has sent her warm wishes to the New Zealand athletes preparing for the opening of the Commonwealth Games on Australia’s Gold Coast... More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review of Books: Martin Edmonds' The Expatriates

This book is an extension of, and tribute to, the life’s work of James McNeish. Without sacrificing any degree of authorial independence, the result is gracefully written, handsomely produced, and likely to propagate many further works of its kind. More>>

Max Rashbrooke Review: The King's Singers and Voices New Zealand

To be good at one thing is impressive; to be so versatile across a range of genres is truly exceptional. More>>

Joe Cederwall Review: WOMAD 2018 - Harmony of Difference (part 1)

A friend described WOMAD as his “favourite white middle class celebration of diversity.” There is certainly an echo of truth to this as the crowd is still largely white and middle class, but this WOMAD for me represented that a better world is possible ... More>>

Harmony of Difference (part 2)

Top international world music artists seldom make it down to this neck of the woods, so for those of us into this sort of thing WOMAD is certainly a welcome addition to the cultural calendar. Now it is a case of waiting and looking forward to seeing what they manage to conjure up for next year. More>>

Howard Davis Review: A Bigger Splash - Te Papa Celebrates Twenty Years

Considering the available resources, this is a decidedly hit-and-miss affair, mainly due to some highly questionable curatorial decisions. In their overweening wish to "push boundaries," Charlotte Davy and Megan Tamati-Quennell have made a number of serious miscalculations by ignoring a basic rule - keep it simple. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland