The Cure (aka NHS Whistleblower) is a new Channel 4 drama, based on a true story, from 2007, which highlights just how much we rely on the NHS, and I have for certain, as following the aortic valve replacement operation which I had as a result of my condition soon after being born.
When we first meet Julie Bailey (Sian Brooke), she’s hiding in her cafe, with people outside, baying for her blood like a pack of zombies, before the drama goes back to the beginning of the story…
Her mother, Bella (Sue Johnston), is admitted to hospital with a hernia, but thanks to a variety of factors, she never comes out. On her arrival, they see how the hospital is a dirty mess, there’s nurses ignoring the patients, hospital staff being shouted at in a bid to reach Trust targets, and some of the same staff being shouted at for not fiddling the stats enough to hide the fact…
Julie blames the staff – including a consultant whose bedside manner is less than zero – for her mother’s death and vows to do whatever she can to bring this to the fore, and this does hit home big-time when she, and many others in her position – in what turns into a massive scandal, are given a mere three minutes to tell their situation to the board, including the very cold-hearted Martin Yeates (Alex Macqueen) and Toni Brisby (Elizabeth Rider).
As the alternate title indicates, there’s one thing Julie needs, and that’s an NHS Whistleblower… but who will it be?
The Cure is certainly worth a watch, and Sian Brooke is superb, but all too often, it does feel rather perfunctory and not as gripping a drama as I expected.
However, I have to say that given that Channel 4 are showing this drama one week AFTER the election, why on earth didn’t they show it before?
I understand that the same goes for ITV’s NHS documentary on Tuesday night. I didn’t see that, but the word is that (a) it was bang on the money, and should’ve been shown BEFORE the election, and (b) why was it on so late? I was broadcast after the 10pm news. But then, both Channel 4 and ITV get some cash from the licence fee, and that’s why they want the Tories to stay in power(!)
The Cure is available to watch on All 4.
Director: Bruce Goodison
Producer: Kate Cook
Writer: Amanda Duke
Julie Bailey: Sian Brooke
Bella Bailey: Sue Johnston
Phillip Jones: Simon Armstrong
Dr Heather Wood: Georgie Glen
Nurse Botham: Sandra Huggett
Mr. Salim: Ranjit Krishnamma
Martin Yeates: Alex Macqueen
Toni Brisby: Elizabeth Rider
Mr. Mohindra: Noof McEwan
Laura: Hannah Rae
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.