20 August 2013

Stop screaming in pain will you - I can't hear myself on PayByPhone

part of the photo taken by an NSL traffic warden

You don't believe Mr Mustard do you, that a Doctor on call, in an urgent response to a person in distress would lead to an NSL traffic warden ignoring a flipping great "Doctor on call" sign in a car windscreen and issuing a parking ticket? What could a traffic warden do in this situation? They could hang around and see if an ambulance turns up to see if someone gets taken to hospital or to see if a man or woman comes out of a nearby house carrying a defibrillator or a Gladstone bag and rushes off to the next person in dire medical need. No, an NSL traffic warden won't do that as if they don't issue 2 parking tickets per hour their life won't be worth living (ironically) when the supervisor gets hold of them at the end of the shift. Traffic wardens have not got time to waste seeking out the truth and using commonsense, they have to hit the motorist quickly with a penalty charge and move on to the next victim.

If you are a Doctor and you see a traffic warden has an urgent medical need what would you do? Well Mr Mustard thinks you should tell them to hold on to that heart attack they are having whilst you find the nearest PayByPhone bay and then register your vehicles (you might as well register them all whilst you are about it, Mr Mustard has three of them) and then your credit cards (Mr Mustard has two) and your debit card (only one of those) and then make a payment and after that you'll attend to the medical emergency (ooh 20 minutes later, are they still alive?) as you don't want to run the risk of getting a parking ticket whilst you give life saving emergency treatment as adhering to rigid council parking rules is much more important than the busy life of a Doctor, isn't that right?

Luckily Mr Mustard isn't a Doctor and most, if not all, Doctors would stop and give first aid and worry about a parking ticket later.

Of course, presented with a letter from a Doctor those lovely cheap back office NSL staff in Croydon, the ones everyone thinks are in Worthing, will google the name of the person writing, find they really are a doctor (who would lie about this?) and cancel the parking ticket. Sadly they aren't that pro-active in NSL and they have rejected the informal appeal. Mr Mustard will now deal with the next 2 appeal steps and will present the argument at PATAS, if commonsense does not miraculously make an appearance before then, that the council has been wholly unreasonable in failing to cancel this parking ticket for a Doctor who has been providing an on call service for 20 years.

What has brought us to this pretty pass where doctors, trusted individuals who have been able to sign passports for decades, are not trusted to tell the truth about a medical emergency because of the less than 1% chance that they might be a liar trying to weasel out of a parking ticket? They shouldn't have to tell NSL that Mr M Mustard of 22 Blogger Mansions had an allergic reaction to a cheese flan which inadvertently contained peanuts as these are all personal details which a doctor should not disclose because of data protections reasons and because of the Hippocratic oath, which translated by Wikipedia in part says

"All that may come to my knowledge in the exercise of my profession or in daily commerce with men, which ought not to be spread abroad, I will keep secret and will never reveal."

Mr Mustard couldn't see the bit of the oath which said the Doctor had to tell NSL anything about the patient to justify cancelling a miserable parking ticket.

The world has become a topsy turvey place when lowly traffic wardens can hold Doctors to account. Mr Mustard is with the Doctors. Doubtless he will now receive an email from the council saying that a clerical error has taken place at NSL and if he provides the car registration and PCN number all will be neatly tidied away. Why does it have to come to pass that a parking ticket has to be featured on a blog to be cancelled when it is manifestly unjust? Given the 165,000 parking tickets a year that are issued in Barnet, Mr Mustard can't deal with them all and will need the doctor himself for stress brought about by overwork.

If you have received an unjust parking ticket do please tell Mr Mustard as, for now, he can cope and he might just write about it on this blog.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

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