Weekly roundup update

As I drew up to my house in the car this morning after walking Bertie there was an ambulance and police car at my neighbour’s house.  The Carer had found her dead on the floor.  She had tried to get up in the night, fallen and lain on her own in the dark probably praying for help and becoming hypothermic until she died.   She had only been out of hospital for 36 hours. It’s a fucking disgrace.

I spoke to the ambulance men and told them that I’d written to the hospital about my concerns that she wasn’t fit to be allowed home, her house was infested with vermin and her care situation inadequate.  The paramedic couldn’t believe his ears and just shook his head in disgust that they had still discharged her.

If this is how we treat vulnerable, frail, 90 year old human beings we should be ashamed as a nation.

The Coroner now has to decide if there needs to be a post mortem, but when he learns she had cancer he probably won’t bother.  So no inquest either and the whole situation will be swept under the carpet and forgotten.  No-one will know that she actually died of neglect and inappropriate discharge from hospital.  And that makes me furious.

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14 thoughts on “Weekly roundup update

  1. artfulblasphemer

    I am so sorry, what an absolutely awful situation to witness. You have gone above and beyond to try to help but clearly one fish can’t swim upstream. It’s a disgrace, and I hope perhaps the media gets hold of the story and there is at least *some* outing of the truth.

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  2. Glo

    So sorry to hear about your neighbor. It’s heartbreaking and I suspect a lot more common than we know. Without family advocating and pushing for things it’s hopeless. Even with that it’s often times inadequate at best. Again my sympathies to you as I know you were there for her when you could be.

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  3. Jill

    Oh no! I am so sorry to hear about your neighbour. Shocked actually, though I probably shouldn’t be considering everything you did warning the hospital and carers. This really is where the health system is failing. The Govt and country need to look at elderly care as a whole area to be funded as we fund the NHS as a different area. It can’t just be added on to health care as an extra. We have to look at Scandinavian countries and how they deal with this in a much better way.
    But again, I hope you are doing as well as possible in the circumstances. Certainly not something nice to come back to. I send you a huge hug from over here xx

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    1. Jak Post author

      Thanks Jill. I was saying to my Mum on the phone yesterday that all these so-called professionals who work with elderly people day in and day out don’t have a bloody *clue* what their lives are really like. It’s one thing walking a few steps with a Zimmer in hospital, on a hard, clean, hospital floor without furniture, with physios either side in case you fall, in the day-time with excellent lighting and quite another trying to walk with a Zimmer in a tiddly tiny lounge, around furniture, with a worn carpet, in the dark at night when you’re half asleep and trying to rush cos you need a pee and can’t hold it for long. No-one cares what elderly people truly need, just that they’re out of hospital so their bed can be used 😦

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  4. That Other Jean

    You’re absolutely right, Jak. It’s a disgrace that your 90-year-old neighbor was released into the situation she faced when she got home. I’m glad you did all you could do, and I hope the UK government can be persuaded to do better by elderly people. Unfortunately, care for the elderly isn’t any better in the US.

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  5. Ellie

    That’s incredibly sad and somewhat frightening, every old person I talk to tells me not to grow old. At least you did the right thing & tried to make a difference instead of look the other way like many others do. Its still a terrible thing for you to go through & I hope the added stress doesnt make you any more ill.

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  6. Teri

    How awful! Just heartbreaking. I’m realizing more & more that in this life, you really are on your own in many ways. I’m so sorry, I’m sure she appreciated your compassion.

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  7. Sarah

    Sorry for the late reply, I’ve only just seen this! How awful. She should of least been offered hospice care which the hospital should have referred her too. They don’t even pay for it, they’re mostly run by charity funding with a small anount of government funding.
    Is the the care quality commission that regulates hospitals. I would contact them. I’m just concerned you hear about this on the news and it’s happened to lots of people. I think the CQC regulate social services too
    You did so much to help her within your capabilities what with your parents too and your own struggles. It’s difficult to say don’t beat yourself up but I think it’s the lack of control over the situation and like your other more recent post about the film on ME it’s a constant struggle to be heard, listened too and taken seriously
    Take care x

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