The benefits of French health care

Alpes-Maritimes, 11th March

JanieI'm now 30 weeks pregnant and I'm expecting twins. So far there have not been any complications, and the French system has far outshone its strong reputation in la sécurité sociale, social security. I have monthly appointments with un médecin accoucheur, an obstetrician, in Nice, who also gives me une échographie, a scan, each time, which is very reassuring. In the UK I would have about three during the whole nine months.I now have une sage-femme, a midwife, who visits me every week at my house. She teaches me to breathe and checks the baby's battement des cœurs, heartbeats. The local G.P. arranged this as we are too far from an anti-natal class, so again I am thoroughly looked after.

I also have had to have des analyses de sang, blood tests. I go to a laboratory in Nice that is excellent. I have to have monthly tests for la toxoplasmose, toxoplasmosis, and la rubéole, rubella. As you can see most of the 'big' medical words are very similar. Yesterday I had to drink a glucose concoction, which was dégoûtant, disgusting.Ashley is travelling with work for two days every week, either to Amsterdam or Brussels, so I am left alone, crossing my legs and hoping nothing happens too quickly. He is getting very excited (ok for the men!), and together we have been preparing the nursery. All my neighbours and friends have been marvellous. We are getting bags and boxes of clothes, together with lots of helpful information, which is making this time so much easier for us both.

Not ready to leave just yet!

Janie's houseAlthough we still have the house on the market, we have decided that we are not ready to leave France. It has been hard and sometimes bewildering, but we love it here. We would like to sell the house and buy a smaller property, without having paying guests to worry about. Also, at 11 acres, the garden is a big commitment. I have looked around at other nearby properties, and we should be able to buy a local village house, and then a flat near to the sea, which we can both rent and use. Of course all these sunny days have contributed to the decision to stay!

Sent by: Janie

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