Thursday, 24 February 2011
NHS ~ Failing to Treat Elderly with Care & Respect
John Allerton 1927 ~ 2009
For nearly two years I have been trying to pretend that the things that happened to my dad when he died were a tragic one-off but now I realise the sad truth. I can barely stand to hear the terrible things in the news about neglect of the elderly in hospitals, the removal of all their dignity and total disregard for their human rights.
My father died in hospital. He had dementia which had advanced very quickly and after a short time in a care home was admitted to hospital after a fall, just a fall. Within the first few days he had another fall but it was not noticed that he had broken his shoulder. When it was noticed, he was bandaged with a pillowcase because they "didn't have the right dressing".
There followed a catalogue of neglect bordering on abuse and he wasn't the only patient I saw left to their own devices, without drinks, without help eating, without any caring attention. My dad was nil by mouth and so slowly, over a month starved to death.
We made an official complaint to the hospital and were fobbed off with excuses which we accepted because at that time it was too painful to pursue it. I wish now that we had been stronger, louder and more determined.
My father was in the Royal Navy during the 2nd World War, so he survived Hitler. He had T.B. and diabetes which he survived. He survived the death of my mother from lung cancer, only to die scared, confused and neglected.
Sorry Daddy x