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Need a doctor out of hours? Don't call 111!!! - Page 2 - Carers UK Forum

Need a doctor out of hours? Don't call 111!!!

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
SW, I think it's a brilliant idea to get her to try out your dad's home! It sounds 'ideal' - as in, as 'ideal' as these things can ever be. Imagine how great it would be to have both your parents in the one place, and with 'someone else' looking after all the gruesome stuff like toileting and feeding, and you can then just visit them both, and enjoy their company, while you have them. If it's affordable at all, it really does sound like a good idea.

As for socialising, I'm sure, being slightly cynical here, that staff would be only too glad to have a resident they don't have to 'entertain'!

I wonder, you know, about the CBA aspect that she is currently exhibiting - do you think there is any element here of her trying to 'manipulate' you? I am wondering whether what she wants is for you to live with her and look after her, and so her refusal to go to the loo is her way of saying 'Look, now you'll HAVE to come and look after me, won't you! (And if you don't, I'll just sit here in my own mess and THEN you'll be sorry!!)"

Don't underestimate the 'cunning' so to speak of the remaining mind. At my MIL's Abbeyfield, the house manager told me he suspected that a bout of 'bad behaviour' by my MIL after she'd had a week away from the place with me at my holiday house in the westcountry was because she was trying to get herself 'thrown out' of the Abbeyfield! He's an experienced chap, and has seen a lot, so he might be on to something there! (Her 'bad behaviour' consisted of firstly helping herself to other people's food on Sunday evenings when they set out plates for the residents - she took the biscuits she liked off everyone else's plate! And then the next time she took her own plate and chucked the entire contents in the bin.....) (In a sad sort of way, I can understand her getting bad tempered and chucking away food she doesn't want in a place she doesn't want to be in, but can't understand that why she has to be there is because she can't understand why she has to be there! As in, if she knew why I was at the end of my tether I wouldn't have been at the end of my tether!)(I've got a convoluted explanation for friends - 'If MIL knew what a burden she is she wouldn't be a burden'! Just about sums it up for me, alas.)

Anyway, all the best with your mum, and I think a trial at your dad's home is brilliant. Good luck!
In many ways, the NHS have brought the current problem on themselves, by closing all the little "cottage hospitals" which could take pressure off the acute hospitals in times of pressure.
omg shewolf you and i are living almost parallell lives

i live with my dad when im not working - ( i fly long haul ) he is 87 - widowed, lonely and has some sort of hypochondria, anxiety, panic attack thing going on which gives him SEVERE DIBILITATING VERTIGO, he WAS given prozac for this as well as drugs for the dizziness, but decided to stop taking the prozac and hence has been much much worse for the last year - he also needs colon polyps removed and has an appt this week which he is now getting all worked up about

last night i left him and went to my room at 9 - all was well but i was due to fly to india today - at midnight he cried out for me - convinced he was 'dying' and starting to tell me all about where his will is etc etc - he couldnt move his head even an inch without nausea and dizziness - vomited a few times - was VERY distraught

i called my sister - she was distressed as she hadnt seen him like this before - and we called 111 ---- firstly the questions took FOREVER - much of it was repeated - we were then told he needed to be seen within 6 hours and a doc would phone us asap BUT that had no time limit on it as they were so busy

doc did phone approx 2 hrs later just said he had no drugs in addition to what ,my dad already has at home - to take x plus y plus z and call our own gp tomorrow

the whole night was horrendous - couldnt get my dad out of bed to use the toilet - his confusion got worse - and it was just very upsetting

however - i do feel that PART of it was self induced by my dad from anxiety over me leaving for work - i am sure he is manipulating me even if not totally consciously

one thing i do know though is that next time i will call teh paramedics because i truly know in my heart that ten mins of poking probing maybe some o2 and a five minute pep talk or reassurance ( which is all my own gp did today) would have saved 12 hours of distress all round
SheWolf

I read this article in the Guardian by some comedian about 111 services, and thought immediately of you.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfre ... ll-to-live

On a more serious note, have you contacted your mum's surgery to find out their direct number for an Out of Hours Doctor? Cut out the middleman so to speak. For, as both you and the above article writer mention, one might as well use google, given the lack of medical training of 111 staff. At least the old NHS Direct had trained nurses answering calls, not tick-box algorithms :woohoo:
That point about the old NHS Direct being staffed by nurses, not non-medics reading off a script, has been highlighted as a key contributor to the rush on A&E, but I wonder what the actual difference in cost was? Just how much more expensive was NHS Direct per annum to run, compared with the 'replacement' 111 service? I haven't read that anywhere yet!
Babybyrd, I agree, much better to call an ambulance rather than have 12 hours of stress on top of a situation that is stressful enough already. From what you wrote it seems like your father is being quite manipulative, albeit in a semi subconscious kind of way. It reminds me of the way that some small children are able to cry/scream until they hyperventilate/make themselves physically sick, in order to manipulate their parents. That said, I've had vertigo myself and know how awful it can be. The doctor said that mine was caused by stress (worries of having two elderly, frail parents), so if your father is fretting about his upcoming op that would exacerbate the vertigo.

Sajehar - I will ask the surgery for details of any out of hours service/telephone line that they might have, for vulnerable patients. Currently Mum is on a second course of antibiotics and district nurses have made a visit to check on her, so I have their number, at least.

The Guardian article was quite amusing and summed things up pretty well.

Jenny - laughed so much at your MIL's cunning plan to get herself thrown out of the Abbeyfield! :lol: Don't think my mother is being cunning. Think it's more likely her sore foot/leg problem made her 'CBA' syndrome worse. Trouble is, when she needs to change her pants and they're soaked through with s*** and urine, some of it could easily end up on her feet/legs, so it's a vicious circle.
SW - I'm relieved to report that the house manager now says she is being much more cooperative and seems far more settled. Phew! He also said I take her out far more than the other residents get taken out (though to be fair, most of them are more compos mentes than my MIL, so can amuse themselves playing scrabble and chatting etc), so I feel my conscience is well clear since she comes out to me twice a week (except when I 'run away' to the westcountry to visit my bro for a week - which I might do shortly!).

All the best with your own parents - and any progress on your mum and trying out your dad's care home? I do think it's a good idea! And maybe then you could have a bit of a 'winter break' yourself (finally!)
I am so sorry that you had such an awful experience, SheWolf, but, sadly, it doesn't surprise me. My grandson, who has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, had a really bad turn the week before Christmas - he was screaming with severe abdominal pain, saying his arm was really sore and he couldn't breathe.

It was just after 10 p.m. on a Sunday night, so, given the urgency of the situation and the knowledge that I've had to wait hours before in emergency situations with other family members, I decided to take him straight to A&E. When I got to our local A&E department, the doors were locked and a sign directed me to an intercom system, where a woman answered the buzzer to tell me I would have to dial 999 for an ambulance as the facility closes at 10.00.

So, I stood outside a hospital on a bitterly cold December night, with my grandson in his wheelchair, phoning for an ambulance!!!

A woman came from the other side of the building in a car and asked me what I was doing. She was obviously a staff member, but, when I said I'd been told to phone an ambulance, she just said, 'Ok', and drove off!!

The ambulance team arrived twenty minutes later and decided that he should be taken to the big hospital, fifteen miles away, as his pulse and heart rate were very high. We were seen by a doctor after 2.00 a.m.; I was told to give him indigestion remedy and paracetamol, and we were sent home at 3.20 a.m. in sub-zero temperatures.

The way vulnerable people are treated is totally inhumane, and, as this is an election year, we should be badgering our M.P.s with evidence of this type of thing - they are supposed to work for us, after all. Regarding the drunks and those with minor ailments taking up all the time at A&E, I think this is being pushed by the leading parties and mainstream media to make people believe it is not the government's fault - not saying there aren't some of these people, but I have had several visits to A&E over the past few years, where it has mainly been people like ourselves occupying the seats.

Hope your mother gets the care and treatment she really needs, SheWolf, and that you can have some rest and peace of mind.