I am writing this column soft-eyed at the close of the busy next stage review/NHS 60th anniversary week, with Nye Bevan staring exhortation at me from my desk calendar.
So be prepared for a thousand words or so of fuzzy sentiment and goodwill.
NHS staff have quite rightly been centre stage for much of the week: in the final report, at the Westminster Abbey service, in the media. Generally, everyone in healthland is positive and upbeat, apart, perhaps, from health minister Ben Bradshaw and the British Medical Association, who marked 60 years in the spirit of the start of the NHS with a big row about anti-competition deals between GPs.
Among the good news headlines was Lord Darzi's clear signal that all staff, including "administrators" must stay centre stage if we are to realise the rest of his ambitions for quality and patient power. All staff must ensure this signal is not lost, squandered, strangled or hijacked.
Monday's signal about staff engagement was amplified in Westminster Abbey a few days later in a good and fitting service of celebration. Here are some of the write-home moments from a weird mix of secular politics and the rituals of the established church.
First, the soap opera stuff. The cream of our political class looking bright, bouncy and healthy, with one exception. (Opposition leader David Cameron's tan, as expertly divined by the health workers all around me, looked fake. But when Mr Cameron and Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg stand next to each other they could be brothers.) There was the magnificent - I can't help the way I feel - health secretary Alan Johnson charming the pants from one and all, including Prince Charles big time by the looks of it. The sight of a member of the clergy officiating at a celebration of the NHS swinging round in annoyance at the siren of a passing ambulance.
Second, the hair on the back of your neck moments. The excerpt from a BBC radio broadcast by Nye Bevan a year after the birth of the NHS, in which he spoke in beautiful language about the overwhelming volume of need, about friction, controversy and doubt, as well as the great hopes still vested in the NHS. The power of his words were made even stronger by his stammer. The clear, strong voice of an elderly woman, Elizabeth Farrelly, reflecting on her appointment by Bevan as a governor of the Royal Free London Hospital in 1948. The tribute of a young cancer patient, Ed Mayne, to the public service that saved his life.
Third, the staff. Everyone spoke well of the staff. This was notable, because it is quite hard to do this well, to include everyone, for an enterprise such as the NHS that has more occupations and trades than any other industry. Professional bodies and unions are touchy about failure to include their members in a list. Indeed, the aims of many bodies in policy discussions often appear to go no further than tetchily securing mention of their tribe.
No such problems on this occasion. There might have been a few grumbles about the failure of the organisers to insert "allied health professionals" and "coders" into the verses of Ecclesiasticus, to be honoured for their services alongside "physicians". But on the whole proper tribute was paid to all staff and volunteers. Most pleasant, from my tribal standpoint, were the surprisingly frequent mentions of "administrators", without immediate reference to "failure regimes" and "no reward for poor performance". A rather old-fashioned term, but it seemed to be the safe way to refer to managers and who's complaining? The prime minister even included administrators in his list of unsung heroes in the NHS support staff.
I exchanged "hey, this isn't that bad" glances with the Guy's general manager who was sitting next to me. Reader, our boxes were well and truly ticked.
With all this praise for the importance of our staff, it is not surprising that staff engagement and the development of the whole healthcare team is seen by Lord Darzi as central to the drive for quality, which he sees not just as outcomes but patient experience and safety. This being so, many have expressed disappointment in the relative weakness of A High Quality Workforce, the human resources side of the next stage review. It is pretty well dominated by Tooke and Modernising Medical Careers. Some people are also concerned about the balance between national and regional planning and local employer autonomy. But it was unrealistic to expect every part of Darzi to be equally good or the Department of Health to have had the time to get beyond the recent trauma of medical recruitment.
What we have is a signal and the space for discussion. Managers have both the responsibility and the vantage point to ensure the whole team gets developed and included. We should help shape the vision of a healthcare team working together along a patient's journey and with partners in social care and beyond.
I have just read the case study of how managers in the Glasgow-based specialist sexual health service Sandyford have pioneered a new training model for multidisciplinary staff groups. It includes mandatory subjects such as equality and diversity, child protection, fire, moving and handling, as well as service-specific knowledge, the history of Sandyford, the national and local policy context and future plans and developments.
The training is for all staff, with priority for new employees and administrative staff, who perhaps often feel most excluded. At Sandyford these include receptionists, coders, rota clerks, IT, secretaries, print room, switchboard, janitors and personal assistants.
And guess what, the staff who were kept at the margins for so long love it. The commitment of one secretary of many years' service has been completely renewed: "It never seemed before that managers were that interested in training for us, it was more about doctors and nurses."
This is the sort of thing managers need to make of Darzi. Patients will be the first to notice.