An exploration of the UK carer world

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          Dementia patients should not be hidden away here

  • The Times - dementia coverage                                               2 Feb 2014 and back 
  • Doctors ‘should take charge of hospital food’                27  November 2013
  • Middle classes spend more feeding their animals          26  November 
  • Longer wait to see GP looms                                       24  November 
  • You get what you pay for 
  • NHS management out of touch with ward staff  
  • Care homes face the ‘good enough for my Mum’ test    13  October    
  • NHS is unsafe, says chief   
  • Don’t lose your house to care fees                               17  February 
  • Give carers flexible working, says Marr                         26  August    
  • I must die, my love, to rid you of this burden                 14  July  
  • What you need to know as a parent and carer               2  June
  • Half of carers in debt but aid is unclaimed                    10  December 2011                                                                                                               

2 Feb 2014 and back

The Times - dementia coverage - 2 Feb 2014 and back  here

27  November 2013

Doctors ‘should take charge of hospital food’

Is the calorific intake of a patient the responsibility of the doctors, or the nurses, or the catering staff? Opinions differ ...

26  November 2013

Middle classes spend more feeding their animals 

This doctor believes that the middle classes spend more feeding their animals than hospitals do feeding their patients

Sir, It is not the responsibility of doctors to set the standards for patients’ food (report, Nov 25). Doctors have been gradually disenfranchised, de-professionalised in terms of conditions, responsibility and pay, and have no powers to intervene. 


24 November 2013

Longer wait to see GP looms

PATIENTS face longer waits to see a family doctor this winter, GPs’ leaders have warned.

The Royal College of General Practitioners says more patients will be admitted to hospital because their illnesses will not be spotted early enough, and more will attend A&E because they cannot get a GP appointment.

Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary, and Sir Bruce Keogh, medical director of the NHS in England, have proposed better access to GPs as the solution to a crisis in overstretched casualty departments.

Maureen Baker, who took over this month as chairman of the practitioners’ college, warned, however, that access to GPs would worsen because cuts to funding for surgeries and health centres had left a shortfall of almost £10.2bn.


You get what you pay for — which, for most NHS users, is nothing

When this country had the chance to tell a captive global audience what we do best, the National Health Service was chosen as the crowning glory: a theatrical evocation of its role in our lives was the climax of the opening ceremony of the London Olympic Games last year. When one Conservative MP dared to question this at the time on Twitter, he was ignominiously buried under an avalanche of outrage.  


NHS management out of touch with ward staff - letter

CONGRATULATIONS to Camilla Cavendish for her excellent article “I saw what needs to be fixed in the NHS. Let’s get on with it” (Comment, last week).

Her observation regarding the “senior nurses” who “did not know where their wards were” is redolent of when Richard Baker took over as chief executive of Boots: he allegedly made a habit of pitching up at the desks of middle managers and asking to be introduced to their staff. It quickly became clear to Baker that the middle managers apparently didn’t know their staff. Cavendish says: “Many of the problems in the NHS are management issues.” In the NHS, as with any other organisation, all problems are managerial ones. 

Dr John Chamberlin, Ashbourne, Derbyshire


13 October 2013

Care homes face the ‘good enough for my Mum’ test

Hidden cameras and mystery shoppers could be used to check on care homes under plans for a tougher approach to inspections.

More care services will be punished for failure and all will get official ratings within three years, the new chief inspector of social care has promised. Andrea Sutcliffe said too many care homes pass current inspections when they “just don’t feel right” and inspectors would have much greater scope to use their own judgment .....


13 October 2013

NHS is unsafe, says chief 

London’s health system is ‘unsustainable’, says the capital’s top medical official.  

THE top medical official responsible for running the NHS in London has admitted that the service is at times unsafe for patients because doctors and nurses are spread too thinly.


17 February 2013

Don’t lose your house to care fees

Thousands of homeowners could still be forced to raid their savings and sell their homes to pay for residential care in old age — despite the reforms announced by the government last week.

Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary, promised that once the changes came into being, nobody would have to pay more than £75,000 for their care. Yet experts warn that as the cap, which comes into force in 2017, applies only to the cost of help with personal care and does not extend to food and lodging, most people will continue to face big bills.


August 26 2013

Give carers flexible working, says Marr

Andrew Marr has called for carers to be given the same rights as new parents, saying that entering care means “relative poverty”.

The BBC broadcaster was admitted to hospital for two months in January after suffering a debilitating stroke, and his wife, Jackie Ashley, a journalist, became his full-time carer.

In an article co-written with Ms Ashley, Mr Marr, 54, said that employers should be required to give carers legal protections similar to maternity rights.


14 July 2013

I must die, my love, to rid you of this burden

THE widow of a leading physicist has told how her “brilliant” husband chose to die at a suicide clinic in Switzerland because he could not live with dementia and the thought that he was becoming an increasing “burden” on her.

The professor of petroleum engineering, who was knighted for his services to research, wanted his wife, Ann, to be “free to enjoy” the life she had missed out on while caring for him for eight years as his condition deteriorated, she said.

Ann, who wishes the couple to be known only by their first names, said her 82-year-old husband, John, had told her: “You are much younger than me; you have had no life since I’ve been really bad. There are precious years that you have missed. You haven’t had a day out with your daughters for years. Why should you be looking after me? I am going to get so bad I won’t know who I am.”

source              Cited as            The ultimate caree - a story about a caree             -  No. 6 here

2 June 2013

What you need to know as a parent and carer

A growing number of middle-aged couples are shouldering the burden of caring for ageing parents as well as grown-up children yet to fly the nest.

Almost one in three adults provides unpaid support, such as help with childcare, or caring for friends or relatives, according to a report from the Centre for the Modern Family, a think tank set up by Scottish Widows, the insurer.


December 10 2011

Half of carers in debt but aid is unclaimed

Carers are struggling financially, yet each year millions in benefits are never taken up. Where can you turn for help?

People looking after ill, disabled or elderly relatives are being urged to make use of all the financial help available to them after a survey found most to be struggling with rising costs and increasing debts.


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