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Please tell us about your experiences of hospital discharge - Page 2 - Carers UK Forum

Please tell us about your experiences of hospital discharge

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
102 posts
Michael ... just picked up the last , major , report from the Parliamentary Ombundsman , 2 years ago almost to day :

https://www.ombudsman.org.uk/sites/defa ... spital.pdf

Given the concerns raised in said report , and just by reading threads on this forum , the situation is now grave.

A fragmented system that need recombining ... as if that was not an obvious conclusion ?

I will assume that the CUK unit are using that report as a base ... ground zero.

Internet search wise , numerous reports of individual cases since May , 2016 , but no trace of any supporting organsation for either carers or carees entering the arena.

No doubt , the hierarchy share my view that any response should be a co-ordinated one on behalf of both the Carer and Caree armies ... safety in numbers ... which should allow all to " Raise the temperature " within present day restrictions ???

Are family carers now becoming substitute nurses ... as well as covering for other services within what's left of the social care sector ?

2018 ... a family carer's cv takes on the length of War and Peace ... for some , now into a second volume ?
I would like to add that when a caree is discharged when they shouldn't be unsafe discharge then it does cause problems further down the line.
Seeing the O.T. at the hospital could have resulted in extra help and delayed or reduced my caree getting worse.
They are now needing a lot more help which could have been avoided.

I have said before being in hospital gives a chance for the NHS to have a good look at the patient , see if additional help can be granted. But it just seems get them out as quick as poss.
Sending them home with the same problems which the family or unpaid carers have to cope with.
That's because the hospital's priority is freeing the bed up, not the health of the patient.

It's a vicious circle that will only be cracked by the re-creation of 'cottage hospitals' as the 'half way house' for the convalenscent of the elderly infirm with complex care needs etc etc etc. But any remaining 'community hospitals' as they are now termed, are being deliberately shut down for anything else but day appointments - no beds any longer. It's a deliberate policy.

The NHS has only two things it wants old people to do - be looked after by family, or die.

It's the cheapest option.
A few years ago, my mum fell and broke her leg, it was nearly amputated but ultimately was saved by a very special purpose made artificial knee with an ultra long "spike". It was all very complicated, but ultimately reasonably successful, in that she kept her leg. However, after all this amazing work, she was repeatedly asked to lie about what she could do so that she could be transferred from the trauma ward to the rehab hospital, so they could get their bed back!
My Mother was discharged from hospital. I had stipulated that she could not come home until she could do certain things. They discharged her (she could do nothing I'd asked). I needed a hospital bed with rails, the bed arrived with no rails. I'd been told nothing about obtaining incontinence pads once home, carers were meant to visit on day of discharge (they didn't come), was a nightmare from start to finish. I put a formal complaint in to the hospital CEO and received a 6 page letter full of apologies (unfortunately Mum had passed away in the meantime). Stick to your guns and do not allow anyone to be discharged until everything is in place. If a patient has somewhere to go and they know someone will be there to look after them they seriously don't care.
Time for some figures and assumptions ?

Thread started 11 January 2018.

Now day 135.

The first 5 / 10 responses should have set off the alarm bells ... " Something's no quite right here " ... ?

Assume 20 " Unsafe " NHS " On Yer Bike / Discharges " per day ... 10 of which with a family carer to pick up the pieces ... perhaps a willing neighbour of two if no one else at home ?

In that short time , 1,350 family carers now , effectively , taking on a nursing role.

Perhaps 50 " Unsafes " a day ... and in excess of 3,000 family carers ?

A 100 ... even 200 ?

For every 3 Unsafes , 2 family carers ?

Of those Unsafes , any now since died ... any reference on death certificate and / or in Coroners' Inquests ?

( Even today , articles in the media on homeless deaths ... and no follow up by anyone ... paupers lime pit on the quiet for most ! )

Who knows ?

And a Statement made by ANY supporting organisation ... flying solo or as part of a herd ?

None to be found.

Perhaps a tip from the legal profession ... barristers ... NEVER ask a question you don't already know the answer to ... if you do , you have no control over where that answer goes ... ???

Even simplier one from the Street ... " If you don't want trouble , don't go looking for it ! " ... especially if you are now a " Charity " , a non combatant.

An Issue or ... an issue to be forgotten about ... because someone does not " Like " the answer ?
I shall always believe that my mum's health was adversely affected by not just her unsafe discharges, but also by the GP's refusal to send her to hospital when she needed to be there. A week of saying she felt really ill before she was admitted with sepsis. It's impossible to quantify.
Purely on the number of postings , and what a brief trawl has revealed , NHS Continuing Healthcare ( CHC ) is throwing up even more areas of immediate concern than unsafe hospital discharges ... and that is REALLY saying something !

Time to expand the initial probe into CHC ?

Both , in their way , are connected to a much more fundamental issue.

The rationing of nursing and care through lack of resources , and present Government policy.

https://www.carersuk.org/forum/support- ... ions-33311

You unleashed the Kraken ... and this is the result.

Both are placing many family carers in an almost impossible situation.

Are family carers now being asked to take on nursing duties as well ?

Imagine the reaction of Unison if more of their care worker members reported being asked to do what family carers now do ... and there is NO choice ... the caree is simply returned to the carer without a safe discharge , or illness which has fallen foul of the CHC criteria.

In some hospitals , it is unqualified care assistants than are doing the nursing , adding to the issue :

https://www.carersuk.org/forum/news-and ... ilit=nurse

Family carers would never " Down tools " ... and doesn't everyone connected to the social care sector rely on that very fact !
Back to hospital discharges.

Just a headline , this morning's Guardian ... directly related ???

https://www.theguardian.com/society/201 ... -in-a-year

Number of patients readmitted to hospital rises to 1.38m in a year

Increase of 19.2% leads to fears that busy NHS staff are missing warning signs


Need any more ?
One of the issues is how the hospital defines "fit for discharge". Mum was in and out of hospital a lot in the last 7 years of her life. As far as a hospital is concerned, if they sort out the immediate MEDICAL problem that someone went into hospital for, then they are "fit for discharge". However, they just don't understand that if that medical problem has led to increased needs, because the patient is weaker, more frail, as a result, they might be medically "better" but they are still "unfit" to go home,

In a hospital there are ALWAYS staff around to cook, clean, help them to the toilet etc. but none of this is available at home. Yes, carers might go in to put a meal in a microwave at lunchtime, but who is there mid afternoon when the patient needs something? My mum got to the stage where she couldn't boil a kettle and do herself a drink, because she needed both hands on her Zimmer frame to stand. So then she was given a Thermos in the lounge, but her hands weren't strong enough to take the lid off and if it wasn't left near enough (she had a 3 tier tea trolley either side to put her stuff on) she couldn't reach it.

For mum, the crunch line came when she was told she could go home, bedbound, living alone. If she needed to go to the toilet, she could go in her "nappy". No care service in our area between 8pm and 8am. This was someone with incredibly delicate skin and a history of sores. She was admitted in June, they said she was OK for discharge in 2 days, but I knew they hadn't even seen her walk, because there was no Zimmer by her bed, and she couldn't walk without it. She was finally discharged to a nursing home, WITHOUT CHC, in January. Neither the hospital nor Social Services ever admitted that they arranged the transfer, but someone did, because it was done by ambulance! The journey was less than two miles, but mum was in so much pain after the journey that she need morphine immediately. How could anyone have ever said she was OK to live at home, alone?!?!
102 posts