Old Folk in Hospital

Discussion in 'Manflu Corner' started by DrWazzock, Mar 30, 2018.

  1. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    The boss has been in hospital now for 4 weeks. He walked in for a brain op. He's 84. He was a week lying in a bed waiting for the op. He has been another 3 weeks lying in bed post op, being moved from one hospital to another and he had been in 7 different wards, and sometimes just parked on a corridor in his bed. He doesn't know what the plan is now. We don't know what the plan is, nobody you ask seems to know either though sometimes the word physiotherapy is mentioned but rarely occurs. There is also mention of radiotherapy but now of course it's the holidays and the meeting "will be sometime next week". So that's another week lying about, waiting, getting weaker through inactivity, more mentally broken down through disorientation and also sheer boredom and frustration. We really can't see why he wouldn't be better off at home where we can provide reasonable care, give him more exercise, get him back in his old routine, surrounded by the things that interest him and give him a reason to live and maybe even a bit of pleasure for without pleasure why bother to live? So hopefully he is coming home. Better than lying in that place for weeks vegetating.

    There is some good work done in hospitals, in particular the op, and I've nothing but respect for that, but is leaving old folk in bed, in limbo, really the best way of keeping them healthy? I don't think so. It must be costing a fortune and tying up beds that could used for more urgent cases as well. The problem is that decisions in the NHS seem to take forever and all the while folk are parked up getting weaker, waiting and waiting. Now I know why they call them patients. From what I've seen the NHS is paralysed by slow and haphazard decision making which leads to a backlog and queues of their own creation and much wasted time and resource.
  2. They aren't called patients any longer though. It's 'clients' now.

    I have no idea why hospitals seem so keen to get you in the door but so reluctant to let you move through the system and get rid of you.
    Cowcalf likes this.
  3. 4course

    4course Member

    north yorks
    could be the possibility of being sued if they send someone home early same as treating all the time wasters who clog up a&e last time I was in albeit just for a couple of stitches on a cut nearly all the folks in a&e neednt have been there if a, they hadnt abused themselves or b, taken themselves to the chemist and got some paracetamol 0r c ate less and exercised more or d, just worked for a living,but the nhs in general is great I maybe wouldnt have a grandchild or her mother if not for them
    Al R and ollie989898 like this.
  4. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    I am sincerely grateful for the treatment, without which he wouldn’t be alive today. My concern is the level of physical and mental inactivity before and after the treatment which has wasted his muscles away and worsened his mental state. They won’t let us walk him for health and safety reasons because we aren’t trained members of staff. They obviously don’t have enough staff to walk many of the patients so they end up spending 95% of their time in bed with all the attendant problems that brings.

    I can’t change the system. It is as it is. But the big lesson for me is that the inactivity associated with a stay in hospital can accelerate the decline that comes with old age. Don’t quite know how you get round it but keeping the old folk out of hosipital and as involved and active as possible with the family must help.
    milkloss likes this.
  5. Happy

    Happy Member

    Sounds like he has got lost in the system somewhere.
    Wouldn't be surprised if he's been through a couple of hospitals & 7 different wards for no one to be taking "ownership" of him.

    Big trouble these days is lack of ward/junior doctors. Since EU working time directive came in they are simply not getting the ward time they used to with patients.
    Consultants having to do much of the work they used to do on top of their own but can't be on top of what's going on in every ward if links in the chain are missing.

    He will have a named doctor supposed to be in charge of his care so you will just need to keep pushing the ward staff about getting medical input from them expressing your concerns about his inactivity to get things moving.

    Sadly it's true that it's the squeaky wheels that get oiled.
  6. Dry Rot

    Dry Rot Member

    At what point does the state take over completely and decide that a patient must stay in hospital? I know we sign a consent form but surely we have the right to discharge ourselves? Not suggesting that the OP removes his boss, just curious for my own purposes when that time comes!
  7. milkloss

    milkloss Member

    East Sussex
    From my experience you have to pin somebody down and get them to accept responsibility for his care. I had trouble with father and had to be there every day to convince staff he was active (but slow to move), mentally capable and had real knowledge and experience to give me as well as the wider community. Tell them you are going to take him home unless someone with knowledge and responsibility can convince you otherwise and justify their opinion. Don’t be horrible, just firm and fair. They’re a good bunch really, must be a nightmare working with a system the way they have to.
    Dry Rot and Happy like this.
  8. stroller

    stroller Member

    Somerset UK
    Write a formal letter of complaint to the management/his GP/surgeon stating that you are not happy with the level of care. This will set the wheels in motion as they have a process for dealing with complaints that has to be followed, it certainly caused panic stations when my OH complained about the lack of care for her father, remember the squeaky wheel get most oil etc etc. It needs to be a written complaint, verbal ones just get ignored.
  9. Kidds

    Kidds Member

    I don't have any answers but would like to wish your Boss and family all the best. Not easy stuff for any of you to deal with.
  10. DrWazzock

    DrWazzock Member

    Useful information and reassurance as always. After a frank discussion with the management who had apparently been planning to send him to a care home 50 miles away we are bringing him home subject to their approval of the steps we are taking back home to accommodate his needs.

    I am grateful for the care the hospital staff have shown within the constraints that they work. It was just that being stuck in limbo for weeks on end with no clue as to what was intended was very frustrating for all of us.

    It's resolved now and we have learned we need to be a bit more proactive. I'll leave it there.

    Alicecow, mrs mtx, Dry Rot and 4 others like this.

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