the national hive service

‘It’s a shame they’re selling this place off.’
‘They’ve been talking about it for years. I’ll believe it when I see it.’
‘No. It’s definitely going. It’s prime real estate, worth a fortune. They’d be crazy not to. Shame though. They could’ve built a whole new sort of hospital.’
‘Like what?’
‘I don’t know. Like a giant beehive, with nurses flying in and out, with jet-suits. Black and yellow stripes, going all over the city and seeing people in their homes, like they’re always on about. With little aluminium grabbers underneath…’
‘Like legs?’
‘….exactly. So if anyone needs to go in, you just scoop them up and fly straight back. Manual handling? Thing of the past.’
‘Yeah. I can totally see that. No traffic problems.’
‘Exactly.’
‘But in a way, that’s just a normal hospital. Only with bees.’
‘No it’s not.’
‘Think about it, yeah? What happens now? We treat people at home who can be treated at home, and we bring in those we can’t.’
‘Yeah, but I’m talking about a long time in the future. In the future there’ll be loads more things to keep people going.’
‘There’s already plenty of them.’
‘No, I know – but – in the future, medicine will be individually tailored to suit a person’s needs. Like organs. They’re already doing it. Pretty soon they’ll be growing spare organs.’
‘Where?’
‘I don’t know. In the lab. On a tree. So when your heart packs up, there you go, there’s another one for you.’
‘Nice.’
‘People won’t be as sick as they are now. And when you do go off, or fall under a truck or something, instead of getting taken to hospital in an ambulance, you’ll be slung under a giant bee.’
‘And A&E’ll be a big hole at the bottom of the hive, where they all go in.’
‘Maybe. It depends.’
‘On what?’
‘Structural questions.’
‘Cool.’
‘And instead of cubicles you’ll have cells, filled with patients instead of honey. And instead of nurses, you’ll have worker bees running about.’
‘I think that’s ants.’
‘I don’t mean real bees or ants. How would that help? I’m just using them as examples. From the natural world.’
‘Anyway. Yeah.  Totally. I think you should definitely put it in an email to the Chief Exec. He’s always interested in new ideas.’
‘Yeah?’
‘Yeah. And copy me in.’

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