#PersonalIndependencePayment goes live today in GB – have to wait to October for Northern Ireland

NAT has produced a great factsheet about the introduction of PIP in the United Kingdom which from this year will start to replace Disability Living Allowance (DLA). Today the system goes live in Great Britain, but not yet in Northern Ireland (as usual we have to wait a bit). From June 2013: New claims for PIP will be accepted from across the UK (October 2013 in Northern Ireland) and no new claims will be accepted for DLA from anyone aged 16-64, unless they are making a renewal claim from a fixed term DLA award which is due to expire before … Continue reading #PersonalIndependencePayment goes live today in GB – have to wait to October for Northern Ireland

Irish figures reveal sharp increase in HIV among young gay men

Today is Irish AIDS Day and the news is not good. The largest ever levels of new HIV cases in gay and bisexual men have been revealed. The Irish Health & Safety Executive’s Health Protection Surveillance Centre show that there were 166 newly diagnosed cases of HIV for gay and bisexual men in 2012 in Ireland. These figures are the highest diagnosis rates recorded to date in the State. The figures show that HIV diagnosis rates amongst gay and bisexual men have increased by 160% between 2005 and 2012 and that they now represent just under half (48%) of all new … Continue reading Irish figures reveal sharp increase in HIV among young gay men

And he’s home

This morning Andrew was let out of hospital, and with the help of a friend, Pam, we were able to get him home easily enough. Many thanks to the staff at the Ulster Hospital, especially the student nurse, Aoife, who seemed to take great care of him when he was in Ward 10. Last night was an awful one for me. I slept really, really badly. I kept waking up, realising Andrew wasn’t in bed, and starting to have a panic attack. At one point I thought that I was going to have to call the out-of-hours GP service as … Continue reading And he’s home

Reversing roles can bring you closer together

This evening I am off up to the Ulster Hospital, Dundonald, to visit my husband Andrew who today had an operation. Hopefully, it has done what was needed and he will no longer have a gall bladder. It has been causing him no end of pain since August 2012. It’s quite the role reversal for the two of us: me visiting him in hospital and not the other way about. For nearly all of our life together it has been me that has been the one who has needed much care and attention. Now, I get to give back some … Continue reading Reversing roles can bring you closer together