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  #11  
Old 12-01-2008, 08:07 PM
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Crikey Ink - I saw this type of thing so many times with my Mum. At one stage she was admitted as she couldn't swallow solids - but they still continued to dump the normal hospital meals in front of her - whilst I was doing the 16 mile trip 4 times a day making liquidised meals for her and ensuring that my Dad was OK.

God, it it brings it all back, and it really is a very sorry state of affairs.

At least, in the end, after much discussion and consultation, they let her die with some modicum of dignity.

But they fouled up even in the last moments so that we weren't with her, and she died alone. Something I will never forget until MY dying day. WHY is it SO bad - and reprehensible?

DL you are a very strong and tencious person, keep it that way, we are all here for you.
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  #12  
Old 12-01-2008, 08:08 PM
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I am so sorry to share the story, but since the cancer was diagnosed we have discovered a bias and ambivalence towards patients.

When I worked in the NHS we were MADE to do to a patient Care and Dignisty course, not for professional development, but to meet another bloody NHS target, so the ticks in box went towords the ratings. You have to gear in minds I was in senior management and had minimal patient exposure (Post Grad Medical Education). My staff and I had to endure this curse which diod not apply to our area of work. I witnessed so much and kept getting more disillusioned as time went on. I sat in the Board Room on day and asked, are we still going to be sitting here in 12 months time talking about the same things and no resolution, but if you thought outside the box, you were branded as a non-team player. it's funny in my time, my department was the only department which was in the black, simply because I did not play the game their way, but used outside business practises, but that is another story. Many a weekend Obi and I painted the seminar rooms, shampooed the carpets and my staff did the window cleaning. the contract cleaners were a disgrace and I was not letting my area become run down. I ripped out old carpeting and replaced it with the latest flooring in my efforts to keep this area of the hospital as clean as possible. we would buy our own cleaning equipment and make sure the kitchen was spotless and the two fridges kept clean. We emptied our own wastepaper baskets and made sure the toilets in the Centre were kept clean. Sadly you can see the wear and tear and I feel bereft, because at one stage I was proud to say I worked for the NHS. Concentrating on the getting the doctors to practise good hygeine was another one of pet bugbears.

There is good and bad medical practise in the Southern Hemishere, but at least we could get the doctor of our choice at the hospital of our choice and if it was an emergency you could go to emergency treatment centres and pay for your care. You did not have to go an A & E, but in all the time whenver I had to use the public hospital system, we still had a very good standard of care and were handed back over to our own consultants, or transferred to the hospital of our own choice once stabilised. one State back home, had it's entire hospital system run on the state lottery and it was free to everyone. What we paid for a year in ULTRA healthcare, a certain healthcare comapny over over charges a month and when I ay ULTRA, I mean everythingn, glasses and dental work, with no limits. Three boys with Marfan's Syndrome and if anyone knows about this syndrome, will realise just how expensive that medical care is, yet we never had a problem, even when the genetists were involved and all the tests required. One of the boys required a cochlear implant, which had to be done in another country, no problems, everything was covered including the airfares. If it can be done elsewhere, why not here?

Maybe this is why I rant and race when I experience incompetence. I expect a certain of care and I expect it with privacy and dignity.

Last edited by Dragonlady : 12-01-2008 at 08:43 PM.
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  #13  
Old 12-01-2008, 08:21 PM
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The state national health service was heralded with much fanfare when it was introduced but I don't think it's creators foresaw it's dramatic demise so clearly.
We have so many dinosaurs - the welfare system, the NHS, the education system. social services - the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing, operational and strategic objectives have become blurred - I swear they spend more on pot plants for consulting suites than they do on first hand care.
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  #14  
Old 12-01-2008, 11:40 PM
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Its how many operations and beds, the golden hand shakes could buy that makes me angry.

Have they not heard of pension plans and ISAs and if they don't have any remorse of taking this money out of a pot that is for the welfare of others then they never had the welfare of others as their best interests.
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  #15  
Old 12-01-2008, 11:52 PM
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DL, Like HH I am following this both here and in your emails and I have been trying to compose a suitable reply since reading this horrific tale.

Unfortunately I have not been able to come up with anything that might make you feel better or in defence of the shambolic thing we loosely term the NHS.

We, the taxpayer pour billions into the NHS and it's mostly squandered on frivolous perks and management.

Seems to me that management has a bottomless budget while things like cleaning and actual treatment is always on a very limited budget.

Doctors are now paid above and beyond a fair wage and the entire health industry has been turned into a lucrative money making machine. What used to be a professional calling has become a 9-5 job.

We hear countless stories of junior doctors working 60 hour weeks, yet when we do need A&E treatment we find a 4 hour wait with a queue of 3-4 people, surely it doesnt take that long to see, diagnose and treat such few people. We are living in an age of ignoring the problem and hoping it cures itself, ideally before we run out of excuses and places to hide.

I remember when a hospital ward was 18 , single sex beds with the nursing station being a single desk about 3 beds into the room, from there they could see almost everyone and were expected to react immediately if anyone needed assistance. In my local hospital the station is outside the wards which have 8 beds and the nurses cannot see anyone.

We used to walk into a hospital and the smell of cleaning was overpowering with a strong smell of disinfectant. Now we walk into a smell of faeces and vomit. The dirtiest word in a hospital now seems to be hygeine, I honestly cannot remember the last time I saw either a nurse or doctor actually wash their hands. When I see blood stains on bedding and even traces splashed on the wall it makes my blood boil.

The NHS needs to go back to some of the old principles which worked so well for Florence Nightingale.

I think most doctors and nurses enter the profession with the aim of caring for people, but it rapidly gets knocked out of them by a system that simply doesn't care anymore.
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Last edited by Tamadus : 12-01-2008 at 11:55 PM.
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  #16  
Old 13-01-2008, 02:16 AM
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my mum pointed out a good difference from her nursing days, nurses walking out of work with thier uniforms on, walking through town shopping centres, exhaust fumes sitting in cafes, and then going back into work.

She was given an allowance of 15 minutes start and end each shift to change. unifrom and shoes.

her uniform never left the hospital.
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Anyone who wants to email me still go ahead but i won't be checking daily, more like weekly up the library.

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time for a life style change
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  #17  
Old 13-01-2008, 09:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hocuspocus View Post
my mum pointed out a good difference from her nursing days, nurses walking out of work with thier uniforms on, walking through town shopping centres, exhaust fumes sitting in cafes, and then going back into work.

She was given an allowance of 15 minutes start and end each shift to change. unifrom and shoes.

her uniform never left the hospital.
I remember my mother going to work in normal clothes and changing when she got there, now you mention it HP
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  #18  
Old 13-01-2008, 09:40 PM
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Like all others on here, I am really not surprised to hear of your ordeal DL, but am so glad that you are both feeling a little better in the safety of your own home.
Disgraceful does not cover this shambolic affair.
We, as 'subjects' are entitled to a duty of care , dignity and consideration by those charged with responsibility in public services.
The whole bloody country has gone to pot.

Not to digress too far from your experience...
My father has now been in a PRIVATE hospital (London Bridge) since last Thursday - being operated on to repair/replace most of his calcified and anurised abdominal aorta.
Operation was 8.5 hours, and very succesful - so far.
Wednesday this week - came out of Intensive Care Unit, to High Dependency Unit, wait for it... with MRSA and pseudomonas (2 very virillant super bugs)

So - not only is her fighting to recover from Major heart surgery, he is now being pumped with antibiotics (acknowledging he has no splene-damaged in previous attempt at this surgery 1 year ago , and removed).

My mother (whom Dad is a full time carer) is in a respite care home in Dover, 80 miles away from Dad.
Needs oxygen 50% of the time, and is on oramorph, diazepam, duragesic patches, you name it - she's on it, with a crumbling spine and referred organ complications due to spinal cord obstructions.
Previously - she was a hospital assistant manager for a very busy Bupa hospital in Medway. How ironic!
She can hardly walk, hardly breathe (and now also has colonised pseudomonas of the lungs), and weighs 7.75 stone (at 5 foot 10")!

The hospitals local to us has experienced the wrath of my fury at the disgusting and inhumane conditions endured by mixed and understaffed wards, so I do understand your frustrations.
Kings in London - the 'Centre of Excellence' in neurosurgery....
The 'communal toilet for mixed ward of 10'...had 3 urine samples, 1 blood sample, 1 vomit bowl resting on the cistern, and faeces over the seat, wall and floor.
The shower - jeeze - had too many cultured samples to count, attached to the walls and entry door.

Each time I complained (tactfully at first), either my mum or dads care deteriorated, with longer intervals in nursing attendance.
Now, I have to wait for them to get out before I complain - which undermines the complaint as it is seen as 'too late to do anything about it'.
I have written to my MP - and haven't even had the courteousy of a reply, just an apology from his secretay for the delay!

Sorry for the rant, but your post strikes a chord of resemblence with me in some ways.

My familys best wishes to you both...
xxxxxxxxxxx
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  #19  
Old 14-01-2008, 07:35 AM
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Thank you perseus. Unless we all speak up, nothing is going to be done,. This morning I was litening to the radio and the subject of the deep cleaning came up. the companies doing the deep cleaning said the hospitals would be far better spending the money on better daily cleaning. The other fact stated this morning, when the cleaning contracts are negotiated they are told to spend less time cleaning a certain function i.e. the tiles.

I am going to relay a tale when I was a Senior Manager.

I found two cleaners (non British) who were supposed to be cleaning the toilets, sitting in the Doctor's Mess, drinking coffee, reading the papers and eating biscuits. I told them that they arey aren't entitled to be there and they state they are cleaning the Doctor's Mess. they were not the assigned cleaners. I reported this to the Cleaning Company Manager and those cleaners told they weren't in the Mess, despite me having witnesses to the fact. I found out they are alloceated a certain amount of time to clean an area and once that time is up, they move on to another area, whether they cleaned or not. It's about time hospitals got back to employing their own cleaners and contracting these services out.

I was called in one night from a dinner party, by a group who expected a clean classroom. I had organised and been promised that thei classroom would be cleaned before the night session. I arrived back at the hospital, to find the classroom in the state it was in when I left at 6pm, so there I was in a cocktail dress, emtying waste bins, washing down desks and vacuumning the floor. This froup was an outside organisation who had hired the classroom for a teraching session, so I fully expected what I had organised to be carried out. When I checked with the cleaning company, I was told there wasn't a cleaner available. I asked why didn't you tell me this earlier and I would have stayed and cleaned the room before going home and all I got was shrug of the shoulders. The Contracted company would have charged me for cleaning that room, if I had not been made aware of the state of it and I would have argued with organisation which hired it that it had been cleaned.

After that my staff and I did our own cleaning for the private groups hiring the classrooms.

We used to get the infection control nurse and the photographer to record the evidence for the file of shame, when we found cleaning had not been carried out and contract company claimed it had been done. One corner of the corrider behind a door, had a dust bunny breeding programme. We refused to clean it and just watch it grow. it was out of the way of the everyone so we could conduct our little experiment unhindered. I used to take my big steam cleaner once every three months and clean the carpets in our offices, because the contract company would say they had cleaned the carpets, and we could prove otherwise. So if this happened in our part of the hospital, where else was it happening?

Why do they have carpet and carpet tiles down in an area where it gets so dirty and has heavy traffic and usage? Whenever I spare money in my budget, I was gradually replacing carpet with heavy duty cleanable floor covering.
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