Regular readers (hullo again, Nige! ) will have followed Monitor's heroic struggle to take on the mantle of modernisation. But last week, the capital's daily journal, the Evening Standard , revealed perceptions straight out of the dark ages with this picture (left), used to illustrate a piece on agency nursing. The starched, yet homely, blonde reminds Monitor more of the ladies his hero Benny Hill used to chase, than of the earnest professionals who staff today's NHS. Monitor couldn't help but wonder if cash-strapped trusts could earn some dosh by renting out old uniforms to meet the needs of clichehungry news media.
One shouldn't boast, but this week Monitor's sack was bulging again, and he was particularly pleased to receive the latest edition of The Bulletin - the quarterly newsletter of the British Healthcare Trades Association. What a read! Only joking. Monitor merely glanced at the pictures before stopping in horror when he saw the cruel trick which had been played on one Sylvia Andrews (left). Poor Sylvia. The feisty team secretary was truly caught openmouthed. Monitor rebukes any organisation which sees fit to publish such a picture of a lady. Nonetheless, this particular reference wouldn't make sense without it.
And finally, Monitor was supping his first cafe au lait of the day when he happened upon a newsletter with the headline: 'Can coffee be good for your health?'
Monitor read on, avidly, indeed somewhat impatiently, now that the caffeine was coursing through his veins. 'There is no compelling evidence that coffee consumption in moderation is detrimental to health. In fact, epidemiological evidence suggests that there are potential health benefits of coffee, including its effect on cirrhosis, cancer, heart disease and degenerative brain disorders such as Parkinson's disease.' And there was more: 'Coffee - a great antioxidant!' and 'How much do you really know about coffee?', being particular faves. Monitor had no idea what a life-enhancing substance the coffee bean is: so thanks to the International Coffee Organisation for sending Positively Coffee his way.