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Not much Care: Not much of a Community!

By Mike Cunningham On August 20th, 2013 at 11:20 am

The Care Quality Commission has just produced its first series of reports on ‘Care Homes’ both council- and privately-owned, after the upheaval of senior management. These are the places where we send our ‘loved ones’ when they become ill; or disabled, mentally or physically, or perhaps, to use a more truthful terminology, to place them ‘out of sight and mind’.

Sometimes, it is true, our old relatives have succumbed to mental illlnesses: alzheimers’, dementia, or that modern curse. so far untreatable and only partially-diagnosed; schizophrenia. A dearly-loved mother, an elderly aunt of mine, stayed in a care home for the last few months of her life because she was becoming violent and unmanageable in a domestic environment; and I watched as the mental deterioration took its toll upon the capacities of a once-razor-sharp intellect; to the extent that she did not even recognise me when visiting.

As a nation, we have become steadily divorced from the old principles of decency, of family ties, of patriarchal or matriarchal duty; and have replaced those invisible ties with financial ones: can we afford this centre, or can we move the old dear into this ‘care home’ with the least inconvenience to the wider family?

To quote from a recent CQC report on an outfit which called itself the ‘Whitstable Nursing Home’, although a less-likely ‘home’ environment was found in the words:-

A trolley with people’s drinks on was chipped and had dirty marks over it. Some stands for catheter bags were chipped exposing bare metal that had rusted making it very difficult to keep clean. The radiator in the front hallway had brown splash marks over it. The carpets were dirty throughout the home. Staff said it was up to the night staff to vacuum the night before but it ‘depends who is on’. The carpets appeared not to have not been vacuumed.

People were given cream coloured plastic cups to drink from and some were not clean. One person showed us their brown stained cup and said “It’s rubbish, look at that. You would think they would try to clean them or throw them away. It’s a bit grotty isn’t it?”

The bins in some of the toilets were full. The bin in the staff toilet was full and had no lid to prevent cross infection. The bins outside were not secured and could be accessed by anyone. The sharps bin was not locked and was a quarter full with incontinence pads. The clinical bin was half full with incontinence pads and was not locked. The lid did not fit properly and it smelled strongly of urine. Of three waste bins two had closed lids and one was so full it was overflowing and the lid could not be shut.

I would simply ask ATW readers to study any of the similar reports identified in the Daily Telegraph page on the CQC statements, one of the first done from a realistic and honest point of view; or download the spreadsheet from the CQC website,  and then ask yourselves if this state of affairs has come about in the past three months, or has it been allowed to continue through superficial and peremptory ‘Inspections’ by a series of groups who couldn’t organise a piss-up in a brewery, never mind inspect a whole industry?

And just before anyone out there accuses me of writing of that which I know nothing about, I would simply point to this in my own defence.



The ‘Truth’ emerges.

By Mike Cunningham On July 23rd, 2012 at 10:39 am

I just knew it.

‘Big Mouth’ herself is to blame for all of this shambles.

Firstly, Euan was said to be the real reason why Tony Blair backed the £847 million boondongle which was the Dome!

And now Tony is claiming that Cherie herself was wot’ brought the Games to London!

Vultures and Scavengers

By ATWadmin On February 3rd, 2010 at 9:21 am

According to the Alzheimers Research Trust, care of Dementia sufferers in the UK costs £23 billion per year. Now whilst I believe that this figure is possibly a result of ‘doubling the number you first thought of’, as there is no way the true figure can even be guessed at, the costs will be high. During the various news items and discussions this morning on the BBC, the real reasons behind the calls for ‘more investment in research’, and ‘more care for sufferers’ were only vaguely hinted at, and I believe we shall be hearing a great deal more from the ‘Dementia’ lobby on these points.

The Health Minister alluded to the fact that approximately £1.7 billion was spent on research, mainly on cancer care and cure, and Dementia came a poor last. He also trumpeted that he was forming a ‘committee’ with a view to extending research into Dementia, and we might expect more announcements soon. Not necessarily ‘new’ money, but a greater emphasis on access to the brains of Dementia sufferers after their death, so the scientists can discover how it all works.

Now many might call me supremely cynical, but when I suggest that the very next time you hear Dementia discussed, it will be associated with a call for ‘presumed consent’ to be used in the harvesting of brains, and samples of brains, so that this bunch of ghouls can experiment away to their hearts content! All this in the name of the Holy Grail of research! Some might state that they have no problem with their bodily tissue going towards ‘research activities’, but, knowing scientists as well as politicians, it is a very short step from ‘presumed consent’ to ‘We can’t wait, he’s going to die anyway, so we’ll just speed the process up, so we can STUDY what went wrong’!