Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Another Little Lose End - Or No Real Opportunities For Discussion.

So whilst we're still waiting for responses from Loraine Darcy and Stafford Lightman- and for the papers to be sent to the Healthcare Commission by the trust, so that the independent review can actually go ahead, let's tidy up another lose end.

I wrote earlier about the numerous inaccuracies in the letter from Graham Rich, Chief Executive UBHT/University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which was sent to us on April 7th 2008 in response to our original complaint.

These numerous inaccuracies could spawn a lengthy document in their correction but let's start with the most obvious one.

As I have said before, we had been led to believe that whilst Hari's endocrine outpatient care could be transferred to an adult clinic, her inpatient care would need to continue at the children's hospital. All this appeared to change suddenly when the mental capacity act came into force just prior to Hari's outpatient appointment at the children's hospital in November 2007. After the appointment we were taken to see a ward at the adult hospital with a view to Hari being admitted there in the future.

In his letter, Graham Rich refers to this and states: '...I believe that you were not happy about contemplating admissions for Hari to an adult ward and you therefore found it difficult to enter into these discussions.'

We have to wonder exactly which discussions he was referring to.

Between the appointment with Liz Crowne and Stafford Lightman and going to see the ward, we were taken to another room by the ward Sister and Judith Armstrong, Modern Matron. (Maybe I should point out here that Judith Armstrong had followed us into the appointment with the doctors, without having the decency to ask if this was acceptable to us!)

Anyway, once we were in the other room with Judith Armstrong and the ward Sister, they wanted me to answer questions regarding Hari being admitted to an adult hospital. At this point I couldn't answer the questions as we hadn't yet seen the ward. How could I point out the potential problems on a ward we hadn't seen?

After being shown around the ward, by the ward Sister, we were left waiting for Judith Armstrong to put in an appearance. Finally she arrived - only to disappear again! Obviously she was far too busy to give us any of her time!

As it was lunchtime and Hari needed to have something to eat, it became necessary for us to leave before Judith Armstrong came back- if she ever did!

Consequently there were no discussions to enter in to.

We felt that as Hari had a further appointment at the Liz Crowne /Stafford Lightmen joint clinic in May 2008, we could raise our concerns at that appointment. We realised that they could contact us sooner if they wanted to. They did not do so.

Graham Rich also states in his letter: '...Dr. Crowne agreed that she would bring Hari back to the next joint clinic in January 2008 for further discussions about Hari's future care.' He then claims that this plan was overtaken by Hari being admitted on 15th January 2008.

Now then-prior to Hari's admission in January we had received no notification of the May appointment being brought forward to January. In fact when Hari was admitted we were told that Liz Crowne was on holiday - if she wasn't there she certainly couldn't be seeing Hari in clinic!
So events regarding the January appointment were not overtaken by Hari's admission - there had been no January appointment.

The only way that Hari's admission changed events was that some people chose to abuse the admission, whilst she was ill, in order to enforce her eviction from paediatrics; without considering the very real problems and risks that this would involve.

The January appointment didn't exist and the May appointment at the joint clinic had effectively been cancelled. The appointment during the week after her discharge from the children's hospital had a firmly pre-set agenda - which focused on the fact that Hari's eviction had already been ordered.

So there had been no real opportunity for sensible discussions regarding Hari's future care.


Josie-Lou said...

It's ridiculous that they used the admission to force the transition to adult care through. Had they no consideration for either of you? What were they thinking of putting all this extra stress on you when Hari had enough to put up with being ill and you had the worry of her being ill. This is inconsiderate in the extreme!
December 4, 2008 3:56 PM
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Anonymous said...

This farce shows that people were right to be concerned about the introduction of the Mental Capacity Act. The act is supposed to protect the individual, not boost the power tripping egos of public servants !
I wonder if they have actually read the act in its entireity? Probably not judging by the way they are trying to misuse it! It they have read it then they have clearly misunderstood it and should refrain from using it in any situation until they do understand it. This would protect themselves as well as patients!
December 6, 2008 10:24 AM
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Mark said...

As always the patient comes last!
December 7, 2008 4:36 PM
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Kay said...

Obviously they had made their minds up and weren't going to listen to anything you said anyway. Keep fighting for what is right for Hari. Don't let people these people take risks with this beautiful young woman - her life is as valid and valuable as theirs.
December 12, 2008 5:39 AM
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Christine said...

I'm appalled that this Matron thought she could just invite herself to be present at the appointment with the doctors - how rude of her! Even if she was supposed to be involved in showing you the ward on the adult hospital she had no right to attend the appointment without your permission. This is not a criticism of you but you really should have asked her to leave - you do not have to have anyone present (students included) if you don't want them there. Actually the doctors should have made this clear to you.
December 27, 2008 2:44 PM
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Anonymous said...

Christine is right - you do not have to accept the presence of anyone else at appointments if you don't want them there. How do they expect you to discuss things if you are unhappy about the presence of other people?
December 28, 2008 3:02 PM
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Helen said...

Well we can imagine how bad the ward must be for anyone - certainly wouldn't be suitable for Hari - how could they even contemplate putting her in such a dangerous situation?
January 16, 2009 1:29 PM
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Josie-Lou) said...

Kay is so right, keep fighting!
I simply don't understand how these people can think it is acceptable to treat you in this way. Though I have to say that I suspect an element of discrimination due to Hari being disabled.
January 19, 2009 8:06 AM
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sangran said...

The modern matron you are refferring to, is carrying on in the same vein but this time it is about the staff at a prestigeous London Hospital.... HELP

The Mother. said...

We'd love to help but doN't know how!

Feel free to send more details - use the comment form but start with NOT FOR PUBLICATION if you wish - all comments are pre-moderated so you are protected.

Our response on her leaving Bristol was 'Great Ormond Street's loss is Bristol's gain' !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!