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Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

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  • Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

    Nine in 10 said hospitals were frightening and only 2% felt all staff understood the needs of people with dementia.

    The charity described these findings as unacceptable and a sign that dementia patients were not getting the standard of care they should.
    Dementia patients admitted to hospital in England play "Russian roulette" with their health, a charity is warning.
    The Alzheimer's Society said it had found "shocking" evidence of poor and variable care during its review.
    The report, based on Freedom of Information (FOI) requests, found problems with falls, night-time discharges and readmissions, and said standards needed to improve urgently.

    The Department of Health said the disease was a key priority.
    One in four hospital beds is believed to be occupied by a person with dementia.
    The Alzheimer's Society called for all hospitals to publish an annual statement of dementia care, to include information on satisfaction, falls, readmissions and staff training as part of its campaign to improve standards.
    'Excessive force'

    The charity received responses to their FOI request from half of the 163 hospital trusts in England; however, for some of the questions the figures were based on a fifth of trusts as not all hospitals could provide answers to all the questions.
    Its report showed:
    • more than one in four people over the age of 65 who fell had dementia, but in some trusts it topped 70%
    • people with dementia stay five to seven times longer than other patients over the age of 65 in the worst-performing hospitals
    • one in 10 people over 65 who were discharged overnight had dementia - with the numbers rising to nearly four in 10 in the worst trusts
    • more than half of over-65s readmitted within 30 days - a sign of inappropriate care - had dementia in the worst-performing trust

    The Alzheimer's Society also carried out a survey of dementia patients. It found examples of patients being treated with excessive force, not being given enough help with meals and drinks and being left in wet or soiled sheets.

    Alzheimer's Society chief executive Jeremy Hughes said: "In the worst cases, hospital care for people with dementia is like Russian roulette. People with dementia and their carers have no way of knowing what's going to happen to them when they are admitted.

    "In many cases they are well looked after but, as our investigation shows, too often people with dementia fall and injure themselves, get discharged at night or are marooned in hospital despite their medical treatment having finished."
    A Department of Health spokesman said the disease was a key priority and in recent years 50m had been spent on making hospitals and care homes more "dementia friendly", while 500,000 staff had received extra training.
    "People with dementia and their carers deserve the very best support," he added.



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  • #2
    Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

    They are not stating anything new in that report, just updating what's been going on for years.

    Staff in hospitals (and I know this for a fact) do not always recognise dementia or even believe family and friends when they are told about the patient suffering from it.
    I myself had discussions at our local hospital about the blue butterfly scheme info HERE. This is a simple idea that alerts staff right away when patients notes are flagged up.

    I myself think it is a great idea or at the very least a little to help dementia patients being treated properly. As stated it is an opt in scheme so it may help someone out there hopefully, if they do opt in or get their local hospitals involved in the scheme.

    No we don't need a Junior Doctors strike to be neglected, we just need to be old and we have a long way to go before my opinion on that will change.




    • #3
      Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

      My mum had diagnosed vascular dementia for eight years before she died in February every time she was admitted to hospital it was nightmarish trying to deal with 99% of the staff. There was one nurse on a ward she was regularly admitted to who I would bet anyone 500 came to work on a broomstick. The last time my mum was on that ward was October 2016 the nurse's first words on seeing me and my mum were "she's moving".


      • #4
        Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

        Somehow I am afraid of getting old.


        • #5
          Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

          Oh, it's not always that bad!


          • #6
            Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

            Actually, it is very, very bad indeed. The big problem is the NHS scream funding, the government scream ‘taking it seriously/opening or setting up an enquiry and at the end of the day almost every case is down to poor nursing care and bad local management.
            Most, sorry but I have to say most, nurses do not want the hassle of dealing with a patient suffering from dementia in either a trauma or surgical ward. I know one woman, a nurse herself in a different part of the UK, whose dad was admitted to hospital after a fall. He had dementia and the level of care he was receiving was deplorable. She told me she dared not complain as he would wind up getting even worse treatment. This, she claimed, was what happened to patients in her hospital. The NHS is now so desperate to keep the few nurses they have they will allow them to get away with shocking levels of behaviour. It used to be bad -now it is absolutely shocking.
            Sorry -but there it is.

            An optimist is someone who falls off the Empire State Building, and after 50 floors says, 'So far so good'!
            ~ Anonymous


            • #7
              Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

              I meant getting old wasn't necessarily always bad!
              At least I think I'm proof of that if no one else does!


              • #8
                Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

                Oh, getting old is brilliant in many ways! I find it very liberating to be honest

                An optimist is someone who falls off the Empire State Building, and after 50 floors says, 'So far so good'!
                ~ Anonymous


                • #9
                  Re: Dementia patients face 'Russian roulette' in hospital

                  The following poem by Jenny Joseph is called ‘Warning’ but I call it ‘Inspiration’!!!!!
                  When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
                  With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
                  And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
                  And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.
                  I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
                  And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
                  And run my stick along the public railings
                  And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
                  I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
                  And pick flowers in other people's gardens
                  And learn to spit.

                  You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
                  And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
                  Or only bread and pickle for a week
                  And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.

                  But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
                  And pay our rent and not swear in the street
                  And set a good example for the children.
                  We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

                  But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
                  So, people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
                  When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

                  An optimist is someone who falls off the Empire State Building, and after 50 floors says, 'So far so good'!
                  ~ Anonymous





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