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Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
Our 4 parents always seem to end up either just admitted to hospital, in hospital, or just discharged, over the Christmas holiday, it was as if they had a rota!!

If you are in the same position:-
1. Be very wary of them discharging someone just before Christmas, with promises of care arrangements being made, equipment being provided, etc. etc. It is incredibly difficult to get good care over the holidays, because so many people are away or not in their offices, and they will go "off sick" at the last moment without telling anyone, leaving family carers to pick up the pieces, and completely ruin the holiday for the entire family.
The hospital will say it's so the patient can be back with their family, no, it's so they don't have too much to do in the ward!

2. If your loved one is admitted over the holiday, there may be a long delay before they see a consultant, OT or physio, because they've taken the week off too, and then of course there's a huge backlog when they finally make it back into hospital again.

3. NEVER believe it when they say "the equipment will be delivered the afternoon the patient gets home. No it won't be.
After a knee replacement I was left without a raised toilet seat and chair raisers for almost a week because I was discharged on a Friday afternoon and the equipment lorry only made deliveries to my area once a week. As I'm tall anyhow, it was vital I had this equipment, there wasn't a high enough comfortable chair in my house, so I sat on my bed instead.
Equipment should always be at home waiting for the patient, not the other way round.

If any readers are NHS staff, and this doesn't apply at their hospital, I'm pleased to hear it!
Yep ... unlike most of the pubs , chucking out time gets shorter and shorter as more try to fill the corridors and floors ... occasionally , forcibly occupy ambulances as
there is not enough room to house you anywhere on the premises.


A timely reminder ... the BIBLE on hospital discharges :

https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/nhs-se ... -hospital/


And please ... no sympathy for those in the NHS required to work over the festive period ... 8 million of us will be , like it or not !!!

We have NO choice !!!
When it comes to popular postings over the so called festive season ... Monday , 6th. January probably when things start to return to normal ...
odds on unsafe hospital discharges being the number one topic for us to deal with in the absence of virtually everyone else ?
Thanks I’ll bear that in mind!
Very good thread and really should be an announcement/sticky.

Another basic one but important none the less ; Medication and prescribed devices/accessories

Make sure they supply you enough to see you through the holidays, preferably into the end of the first week of new year.

Sounds a bit "well duh" but hear me out. Not as straight forward as it sounds if your loved one has special requirements (liquid/oral suspensions) which are a pain in the bum for local chemists to obtain even when its quiet.

Special mention to emergency medications (anti-anticonvulsants for example) here as well.

This also goes for prescribed devices your loved one might have, which have parts you regularly have to replace but might be running low on.. for example oxygen masks/tubing, suction machine parts, PEG accessories, dysphagia cups etc don't be afraid to ask them because they go through this stuff like candy and like with the medications you might not be able to get a restock of them in time for the break.

Same applies for actually demonstrating how new equipment works which the hospital might send you home with, if your loved one is able to operate it they should be shown with yourself present in case they forget how, as well as documentation and emergency numbers if theres a problem with it.

Best wishes
It's also important to have "out of hours" numbers for anyone important, like care agency managers when your carers go off sick or don't turn up at the last minute. Sickness can be a particular issue New Year's Eve and New Year's day!
SCOPE forum ... online advisors ?

Whether anyone will drop into the SCOPE forums over the holiday season is unknown.

Might be worth a punt for any desperate for advice before normality , of sorts , returns on Monday , 6th. January ?


AGE UK ... might be worth a punt :


This forum ?

For what it's worth , I'll be monitoring as per usual.

( And , please , no " O's 0-3 down after 20 minutes , Chris ? " )
I'm going to be around all holiday too. No.1 son is going to be "on call" for Christmas and New Year (lots of extra pay and a day off in lieu for each bank holiday, so he's just thinking of the money) so I'll be "on call" to look after my grandson, and M will be here too.