Why do Doctors and managers and hospitals worry more about covering their own backsides than they do about their patients?
Hell no, let’s go back a bit … I’ve been trying to speak to the consultant treating Zoey for weeks. I make an appointment and he doesn’t show up. Today I finally get a meeting where he and I can talk so I expect it is me and he sitting down in a room and having a chat. Clearly I forgot how these things work. There was him, his trainee, the ward manager, the LD coordinator and me in a conference room.
Do you know, as a Carer how you feel like there is them and then you? Well, no, of course you don’t unless you’ve been there but that’s how it was. No one was in my corner and, by ‘MY’ corner I mean Zoey’s. The overwhelming feeling seems to be that clearly we were the cause of this problem, something must have happened at home. That if we were able to cope then she wouldn’t have been sent to hospital. I obviously, well, obvious to me, pointed out that we’d managed to cope just fine for 24 years but something this year changed and it was more than likely the urine infection. They acknowledged that urine infections can cause such issues and reactions BUT … you will love this one … young women her age if they are looking after themselves properly or looked after properly rarely get such infections, clearly she wasn’t cared for properly and they need to know she is safe.
At this point it would be fair to say that I was feeling the need to sign myself into the hospital because they were sure as hell making me mad!
I asked if they could identify a single recognisable mental health issue with Zoey that they were certain were not part of her disabilities, they couldn’t. They queried that she might be depressed but they couldn’t be certain, it was just something they wanted to rule out! I’ll get back to that one!
They said that they need to wait until Zoey is able to engage in the process, voice her opinion. I asked what they knew about Zoey that made them believe that she was going to start doing something there which she’d not done for the rest of her life to date? That was news to them apparently, they were under the impression that she was able to engage in conversation. I did point out that this was glaringly obviously why they should have spoken directly with the family when she was admitted and not waited over a month to do so, they agreed. I mean, they actually agreed they would have found it useful. I mean, who the absolute **** is running the place that knowing this they still didn’t do it despite my making two appointments previously?
The Doctor queried autism, perhaps aspergers and said this was something else they needed to explore, I agreed, absolutely we do but I asked whether they routinely got patients in their acute mental health hospital to be assessed for such things or whether they would more likely happen at home. He replied “fair enough, I see your point”
It seems to me they just don’t get that Zoey actually could be OK at home. That everything which needs to be sorted out can be sorted out at home, it doesn’t need to be in an acute mental health hospital where she is picking up on so much negative behaviour.
The anti depressants … they will take about two weeks to see whether they are doing anything. The doctor acknowledged that the side effects, if there are any, could be quite upsetting for Zoey so … how about we take an already really scared person with learning disability and give them drugs they might not need which could well scare them anymore, yeah, excellent decision.
Bottom line is, I’ve told them that week starting December 2 I am going to officially challenge the section 3 and unless they can have some evidence of a mental health problem by then, despite what they believe this allegedly awful house is for her, she’s coming home!
For the record, no, as a parent you don’t cope with this, not like some people cope. You bounce along the bottom of sanity trying to carve a path through the madness you have to deal with.
Of course, I am not actually Zoey’s carer any more, I got sacked by the government because she went into hospital! I am broke and likely to get more broke!””