The NHS is a right old hot potato at the moment. Current debates remind me of the overly rehearsed tensions between medical/social models of disability. How can the challenges associated with having a particular impairment, or long term condition, be recognised without feeding perceptions of disability as something tragic? Fears that the NHS is under threat of privatisation seem to be stifling any sensible, informed criticism of the way it operates.
Our experience of Southern Health, the NHS provider running the assessment and treatment unit LB died at, has been appalling (not just for the obvious reason but also because of the way they’ve handled the situation since LB died). We’re baffled by this treatment and the silence surrounding it. I don’t know how many posts I’ve written detailing crap stuff after crap stuff, ending with the plea ‘Is someone going to do anything?’ I don’t know who I mean by ‘someone’, but not sure it’s my responsibility to do so. These are publicly funded organisations, for fuck’s sake.
Tumbleweed continues to gather around my pleas, despite discovering that more and more organisations were implicated in what happened. Our MP, lovely guy but completely ineffectual, sent me a letter from the Director of Community and Social Services the other day. A load of flannel; working closely with Southern Health, etc etc. Bland, meaningless drivel. I despise these letters now.
Then, one of the army of enraged ‘lay’ people forwarded me an email exchange with one of the Oxfordshire local authority commissioners. Yes, a commissioner. Let’s call him/her Commissioner X. Read this, weep, and ask yourselves if there is a serious issue with the NHS and the structure of health and social care services in this country.
“It is evident however that the quality of the service at STATT, which had been person centred at the point of transfer to Southern Health in December 2012, deteriorated significantly over the period of time in question and I am very sorry that what was held to be an example of good practice had such a poor report from CQC. I’m afraid we have to hold Southern Health responsible for that deterioration although we don’t say so publicly as we don’t want to knock confidence in such a large provider.”
Commissioner X, our son died in that dump. And I really don’t give a rancid rat’s arsehole if their confidence is dented. It needs denting. Why wouldn’t you openly challenge this? It’s a matter of public interest. And the provision couldn’t have realistically deteriorated to that extent in that time. Nonsense. I’m shocked and ashamed that Southern Health’s dirty little business is being protected by commissioners and the local authority. What a set of deceitful, underhand, shoddy and stupid practices. Lacking in any decency.
I suppose the tumbleweed makes a bit more sense now. I’m giving up asking for anyone to do something now. You’re all a bunch of self serving sheep.
That`s a revealing email.
Bloody hell Sara – what an email. Is there anyone/organisation involved in the inquiry that can be trusted not to cover up? It’s all so horribly shameful
This should be making headline news – both to raise public awareness and in some way, to protect vulnerable people who are not fortunate enough to have a loving, caring family fighting their corner. It makes me shudder to think about what might be happening to those who don’t have a ‘voice’ through their family and no-one to lookout for them. I want to say it’s shameful, but it’s worse than that!
Have you approached the national press (forgive me if you have) What has happened and is still happening to your family is so dreadful it needs to be “out there”
You must feel as though you are screaming for help without making a sound.
Hi Loraine, we’re kind of keeping our heads down in terms of press, because so much we can’t say at the moment. Until the inquest, at some point sometime, we’re a bit constrained. I’m ranting here about the process that’s happened since LB died but this isn’t really a press story without the context of his death I suppose. I stupidly keep thinking, this is so awful someone will step in and say enough (outside of the rigid processes and bureaucracy). Hopelessly naive I know. x
“Is someone going to do something”. What is the role of cqc in this, having undertaken their regulatory role? They have a new chief of social care and they say they are always on the side of those who use services. Doesn’t that mean families too? Perhaps worth a try.
I’ll certainly send the details to the CQC, who have indicated on twitter that they are willing to look into it. Thanks Alexa. 🙂
Tumbleweed flourishes on bullshit. Viewed today (5/1/14). No wonder you were fooled. I notice that there is not a single mention all the way through of ‘family’ or ‘next of kin’.
Try again! http://www.southernhealth.nhs.uk/services/learning-disability/assessment-treatment/statt/
I know. I can’t bear to watch this anymore. Almost should be taken down given the inspection findings. Or maybe it was filmed before December 2012 (when apparently everything was excellent there)… Family? Nah. Not relevant or important… Sigh. x
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“You’re all a bunch of self serving sheep.”
This is the truth. And that’s not right.
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