The Blog of
Nadine Dorries
The NHS & A Cab To The Station.
Posted Friday, 8 December 2006 at 17:51

I don’t know whether it is because I trained as a nurse, but I very much share the upset and distress many in the nursing profession feel at the moment. Since the NHS began nurses have always worked over-time, without pay, and it’s always been more important for the job to be done, than to leave on time; this is called goodwill and is the invisible cohesive glue that binds the NHS. It is not an over statement to say that the NHS has survived on this goodwill. What we are seeing now, is that as a result of redundancies, nursing staff morale on the wards is at rock bottom. Whereas once staff would offer to stay, ward managers now have to beg staff to stay, without success, which is having a real impact on patient care.

Yesterday I asked the leader of the House of Commons if we could have a debate in the Chamber. Nurses should have direct access to their MPs to lobby them, prior to a debate, so that nurses can have a voice from the floor of the Chamber, something they have never had before. Unfortunately the Leader of the House response was that nursing morale was not an issue. Is the government in denial? Is there anyone in who understands or is even interested in or cares about what is happening in the NHS?

A funny thing happened to me on the way home last night. I hailed a cab to take me to the station and as the cab pulled over a man’s voice behind me said, "It’s OK you take it." I was a bit startled as I had not realised there was anyone standing behind me! I asked the man where he was going, it was to the same station as myself, so I asked if he would like to share the cab - It was pouring down and I did feel bad!

On the way to the station, he asked if we could stop by his hotel so that he could pick up his bags. When he got back into the cab he presented with a flourish, a crisp white business card. I knew I had some of my business cards with me too, somewhere in a broken plastic pouch and spent the next 10 minutes trying to find them. At the bottom of my handbag (which is the size of your average suitcase), hidden amongst a banana, a packet of polo’s, half a bagel, a dog lead, umbrella etc I finally found the pouch and gave him one of my cards, even though it was a bit battered and bruised. He didn’t seem to mind and I watched in amazement as he placed the card I gave him in a beautiful little red leather wallet which looked distinctly Prada; which he then placed into an exquisite black velvet bag with a draw string; which he then put into a 'just so shabby' chic Italian leather briefcase.

 And the moral of the story is?..... You can tell a lot about a man – and indeed sadly a woman - by the business cards they keep!


Contact Nadine
Nadine Dorries MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA
via e-mail at:
or Telephone on 020 7219 5928

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