Friday, 30 November 2012

Care for the Elderly

This morning my 96 year old mother did what she has done frequently in the past 10 years...she forgot to use her walking frame and fell over.  The system then kicks in.  She is in a Nursing Home that she pays for but no member of staff is ever available to take her to a hospital.

In our case the nearest hospital is the notorious Leicester Royal Infirmary. Don't get me wrong the staff are really helpful but they have to deal with probably the most multicultural society in the UK.  They also have the most multicultural staff in the UK and probably would not survive without them

I arrived at the hospital at 8.30 am having battled through the early morning traffic and my mother was in X-Ray. By 11.30 no doctor had been near her...she is 96! A couple of nurses did their best to alleviate the situation but when a doctor did arrive he then decided that her skull required a scan.

I had to leave.  Four hours in A&E is enough for anyone and I could do no more to assist. So I had to leave her requiring a scan to see if she had fractured her scull (her head was spectacular). She has a sort term memory problem but communicates well. That means that she sounds lucid but in five minutes cannot remember what she has said! If you don't know that then she sounds remarkably good for a 96 year old. 

She has conned people for years with her act so it was no surprise when I get a call at 10.40 pm to inform me that she is being sent back to her Nursing Home. Outside the temperature is well below freezing. The hospital rang me to find out the telephone number of her Nursing Home (no directory?) so why are they discharging her now?  Can she not remain until breakfast?

I am pleased that she is not seriously injured. She is my mum but she is not the mum that I remember.  She is paying for care but they let her get out of bed without supervision. When they fail in their care they ring me. Can anyone tell me when this responsibility will end?  When do I become too old to care for my mum?  

Am I alone in this?  I suspect not but it is a problem that is part of the modern society which frankly sucks. Our elderly are being treated with contempt and what worries me most is that I will be next!  Sorry but this post came from the heart.


NewsboyCap said...


Your not alone. My Wife and I are in a similar situation. The Wife's Mum is in a 'care' home, they, the care home, seem to think the home is a Hotel. They accept the money but don't seem to accept that they should 'care' for her.
They forget to order essentials, then ring the Wife to tell her to order whatever is needed.
They won't accompany her to hospital or get a Doctor when needed. There is very little to 'entertain' the residents, they are never taken out for a little fresh air.
We would like to move Mum but she considers it her home, so will not move.
As you say the treatment the Elderly receive can be appalling at times, Govt. don't give a toss, care homes don't care. Perhaps we need to change things ourselves. Local community homes, paid for by relatives, not for profit, without the 'spectre' of the state hovering over. Just a thought.

bryboy said...

Hi NewsboyCap tks for your input and so many of my friends are eching the same. What is missing is 'care'. Today less than 24 hours after an operation for a broken hip my mother could not swallow her pain relief pills. When we arrived she was in so much discomfort but it wasn't until I suggested soluble pills that anyone reacted! There was no liquid pain reliefon the ward! It then took an hour to copy a sheet of paper proving my power of attorney because most of the offices were shut on a Sunday! I despair!