Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Going Home

At the beginning of the fifth week, we were allowed to go home. Not back here! But to the rented house. Now Kezia was to start the next stage of treatment as an out-patient. The hospital would provide transport and an interpreter for Nanda.

The new home

What a relief to get home. The coming days were filled with orienting Nanda – local shops, down town, money, buses, bank, switching on the central heating, the gas fire (we don't have such things back here!), paying the rent, the bills.

A brief respite before we started the second stage of treatment - “Augmented BFM Consolidation”. Particularly intensive – but I'll talk about that in a medical post.

We also had visits from our social worker T., the Macmillan Community Nurse from the hospital A., and the local health worker C. C. has helped us out a lot in the last few months.

Immigration again – “No Recourse to Public Funds” on Nanda's new two year visa (and later Jaime's). I'm probably putting us at lots at risk with the immigration authorities here by discussing such things on this blog.

So let's hope no IND officials or racists read this ...

So we registered Nanda and Kezia with the local NHS doctor - General Practitioner/GP in the UK (our family doctor). At the same time the hospital (RMCH) advised the GP not to treat Kezia – everything to do with Kezia must go with the hospital - obvious.

Recently there was an item on the BBC news website that GPs (through the British Medical Council) refused to be policemen for the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND) of the Home Office for illegal or abusing immigrants.

On the IND website it advises what “No Recourse to Public Funds” means, seemingly, the NHS, Child Benefit (it's for a UK child, not a foreign mother for godssake) etc etc – but not education. So we have been able to put Jaime in the local primary school. If doctors are refusing to monitor immigration status, can you imagine teachers ...!

I must say, though, that the FCO through the Embassy and the IND have bent-over-backwards to help us. I don't blame them in the immigration requirements – they are, after all, following the regulations, laws and Acts of Parliament which they are duty/job-bound to follow.

Meanwhile, I needed to come back here. My job is here, our house is here, Nanda wants to come back here, I want to stay here ... and I have to earn some money to keep them in the UK.

Especially, as an IND requirement is that they (Nanda and Jaime – Kezia is a Brit) don't want to stay in the UK indefinitely and we can only prove that by me, a UK national, saying I don't want to stay in the UK indefinitely. Kafka?

So on Friday 7 July I set off back here.

Kezia, Baby and the Menagerie

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