After a few phone calls to my manager and colleagues, I suggested that I do my rounds by bike. My manager wasn't keen on the idea of me riding around with all those sharps on my back... Health and safety regulations! So it was agreed, that I would just use my bike to get to the nearest surgery and then go by foot. Obviously, this meant I couldn't see everyone on my caseload so half of my patients had to be reallocated and I just kept a few.
|Basil was prepped and my work equipment was stripped down to the bare essentials; squeezing everything into a pannier and rucksack|
I set off this morning a little apprehensive but in high spirits, this was gonna be an interesting day. My first port of call was the surgery, just over a mile away, to pick up my work. I decided to start at my furthest away patient and realised that it would take me a good hour or so by foot, so I hopped back on the bike; it would be quicker and I'd organised my bag well; putting all the sharps in secure boxes in the pannier, not on my back. So off I pottered. Much slower than usual due to the weight of the bike and my bags. It was so odd riding with such a heavy load. Plus, I was struggling with the flat pedals, it was a nightmare - my feet were all over the place. Irritatingly, I was also struggling with my trouser legs, which kept getting caught up - improvised trouser clips were made.
Up and down a number of hills and bumpy farm tracks to see my first victim. On my arrival, they were shocked to see me, as they had an appointment at the surgery for the blood test this afternoon. Grrr! What a waste of all that effort (over 20mins riding to get here). Ah, well ... the journey was very pretty. The patient allowed me to take the blood as I was there anyway! Back to the surgery to drop off the sample, arriving a whole hour after I left. I was shocked it had taken so long, imagine if I'd have been on foot!
|A small selection of what I had to carry with me on my bike.|
On my return to the surgery I realised that I had finished! 3 patients in 3 hours and 12.5 miles on the clock! (Oops, normally I can do 3patients in an hour) Thankfully, my colleagues had done all the other bloods between them, so now I could either do the 15mile round trip to the office or take some time owing back. I opted for taking some time back so after speaking to my manager, I finished a few hours earlier.
Although, I had quite the little adventure, loved riding my bike, and despite it's environmental advantages, I don't think I want to do that again anytime soon. It was too much like hard work!