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Episode 6

Episode 6 of 6

The day-to-day realities facing the NHS. Surgeons are forced to use unconventional methods to get their operations completed against the odds.

In this episode, surgeons are forced to use unconventional methods to get their operations completed against the odds.

At Hammersmith Hospital, 31-year-old Jennifer is taking part in a groundbreaking scheme to overcome the five-year wait on the deceased kidney donor list. Jennifer is a live donor and will save her husband Elliot's life by donating her left kidney. Elliot has just five per cent kidney function and is being kept alive by dialysis. Because Jennifer isn't a blood type match for Elliot, she will pool her healthy kidney into a sharing scheme with other donors. After it is harvested, Jennifer's kidney will be couriered to another hospital to be transplanted into a stranger. Elliot will receive a kidney from another anonymous donor elsewhere in the UK.

In St Mary's, 84-year-old Betty arrives to have her bowel cancer removed by colorectal surgeon George Reese. After the operation, she will need a high-dependency bed, but the hospital is on red alert, and there is no bed available for her to recover in. George Reese has to decide whether it is safe to go ahead with her operation, knowing that she will have to stay in the operating theatre recovery area after her procedure, rather than on a ward.

After a year and a half on the waiting list, 41-year-old Daniel is booked in for weight loss surgery with the Trust's leading bariatric surgeon, Mr Ahmed. At a 60 per cent cancellation rate, bariatric patients are the most likely to have their operations delayed due to lack of post-operative beds. To ensure Daniel gets his life-changing surgery, Mr Ahmed has sought approval to use NHS money to buy beds in the Lindo Wing, one of Imperial's private hospitals.

59 minutes

Last on

Thu 23 Aug 2018 23:45

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Role Contributor
Executive Producer Lorraine Charker Phillips
Executive Producer Simon Dickson
Executive Producer Helen Littleboy
Series Producer Tom Currie
Series Producer Gilly Greenslade
Series Editor Graeme McAulay
Production Company Label 1


  • Wed 15 Feb 2017 21:00
  • Mon 20 Feb 2017 23:15
  • Thu 23 Aug 2018 23:15
  • Thu 23 Aug 2018 23:45

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