Knowing Me, Knowing You
Terri is taking personal time and Steph is looking forward to running the ward for the morning. Although she and Ben are still living separately, she is enjoying the romance of courtship all over again. The day is looking good but there are speedbumps on the highway to happiness, and her nose is soon out of joint when she finds Terri has made time to organise the ward before returning to her flat to wait for the plumber.
Denise Baumann is being treated for a broken shoulder, the result of a fall. She is in her 50s and her husband, Errol, is in his 70s. The situation becomes more serious when Mitch realises there is more to Denise's condition than broken bones. He diagnoses dementia. Steph, deeply sympathetic asks Errol if here is anyone she can call. Errol admits they have a daughter, but have not seen her some time, and Steph deduces there has been a rift in the family.
When Rachel, a successful business executive arrives, her antagonism towards her father only strengthens Steph's sympathy for the parents. But is dangerous to jump to conclusions. Steph discovers Errol did know of his wife's condition but kept it a secret. Rachel accuses her father of selfishness. Errol admits he deliberately hid the truth from his daughter but only because he feared she would put Denise in a home. And he is right. Now that she is aware of the circumstances it is the only option that seems to make sense to Rachel. Her father is too old and she is too busy to provide appropriate home care. Is this selfishness or common sense?
The tragedy of Denise's condition is that while she is aware she has a husband and daughter, she no longer recognises them. Errol is a stranger to her and she mistakes Steph for Rachel. Steph realises assigning good guy/bad guy labels to this situation is meaningless. The most important thing is to reconcile father and daughter so they can both be there for the mother. She almost manages, but Rachel is cheated of a reconciliation when Errol quietly passes away from heart failure while sitting by his wife's bedside.
Now Rachel goes to pieces. She has lost her father and she will always be a stranger to her mother. Steph counsels her against throwing her life away out of guilt. It is too easy for the carer to become a victim too. Rachel decides on a compromise — she will put her career on hold to care for her mother. The time will come when only the right nursing home can provide that care but, for now, Rachel intends to love and care for her mother while there is till time left. Steph takes this to heart. How much time does anyone have left? The one you love could be taken away from you tomorrow. She takes the plunge and commits herself to Ben, reaffirming her love for him.
Ben and Bron attend an MVA. The victim, a pedestrian, is Mehmet, a Turkish man with little English. He is disoriented, and confused, and seems to have an obsession with his parked car, a nondescript four-wheel drive vehicle. Ben is put off by the man's vomiting and (apparently) violent attitude. He tosses the man's keys to a bystander, who locks the car without checking the interior.
Mehmet is transferred to the hospital and is moved to Ward 17 prior to surgery. But he can't be operated on until he understands what is happening and can give permission. A translator is hard to find. Connor finds himself stuck with a difficult patient, displaying the same kind of agitation and violence which put Ben off. Like Ben, Connor finds the man's inability to communicate an alienating factor. When pethidine is prescribed for the pain the doctor is too lazy to include the anti-nausea medication. Mehmet is throwing up all over the place. Relations between Mehmet and Connor are at rock bottom.
Connor is able to put his antipathy aside and makes a genuine effort to understand what Mehmet has been trying to tell them. He realises there may be a diabetic child still inside Mehmet's car. Connor puts Ben and Bron on the case. It is a race against time, since the car has by now been towed away. The car is located and the child rescued. Meanwhile, although it is not accepted procedure, Connor enlists the help of a Turkish patient to interpret, and meaningful communication between nurse and patient is restored. Connor bonds with Mehmet and restores his son to him.
Another domestic first for Terri, as she prepares to deal with her first tradesman. A card under the door, presumably from the estate agent, has informed her there is a plumbing problem. But when the plumber arrives it proves to be Neil Phillips. Neil, a former patient of Ward 17, suffers from Munchausen's syndrome. He and Terri did not part on the best terms, and Terri has no idea what his medical condition is now. Terri feels extremely uncomfortable in having to deal with him… but her sense of fair play won't let her express this, After all, he seems to be a bona fide plumber. Neil's presence is ambiguous. No proof that he has sinister intentions — but later, while working, he hurts his hand badly. As Terri dresses it, he voices what she is wondering… did he hurt himself deliberately? When he leaves, there is no doubt he will be seeing Terri again. Later Terri checks up on him. When she discovers that (a) he is a qualified plumber and (b) he was sent by the estate agent, common sense tells her to stop being paranoid. Despite this, she is still worried.
Mitch is monitoring Von's SLE (Lupus) condition, and advising her on the lifestyle changes she must make in order to manage it. Von, fearing public ridicule, resists the advice to take exercise. But she agrees to power-walk at lunchtime if Mitch will do it too. Mitch reluctantly agrees. Because Von's condition is confidential and Mitch is treating her discreetly, Connor is intrigued by what he perceives to be an inexplicably close personal relationship between her and Mitch. Inevitably, Connor jumps to the wrong conclusion.