"Doctors should assess more carefully"

About: Leighton Hospital / Older people's healthcare

(as the patient),

My 90 year old mother has been in hospital for six days. Her nursing care has for the most part been caring. However, she suffers from mild dementia. Despite telling them that she couldn’t wash herself, she ended up with her clothes covered in faeces, though this was eventually remedied. My point is that whoever took her initial assessment did not check with her relatives. Her previous medical history seemed to have been ignored.

She was put back on tablets which she had been taken off because they were making her vertigo worse, causing her nose to stream continually and most importantly stopping her eating. This resulted in a loss of weight from a size 20 to a size 8. On departure from the hospital, she was given a nasal spray for angina which she is unable to use due to arthritis in her hands. She was also issued with a health guidance pack which she couldn't read or understand; it even expected her to do exercise! Therefore, I think the things that should change are that the doctors should be more aware of elderly patients' medical histories. They should asses more carefully their needs and not to over medicate by taking in weight, age and medical history.

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Response from Isobel Carroll, PALS Officer, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

We are sorry that you are unhappy about the care that was provided to your mother. Unfortunately, without the patient’s personal details, it is not possible to investigate the issues raised about the medication that was prescribed by medical staff.

It would be difficult to comment other than to say that medical staff should always take a patient’s past medical history into account and, wherever necessary, involve relatives.

We do apologise for any added upset and anxiety that was caused during the time the patient was in hospital. If you would like us to investigate the specific concerns, please contact PALS on 01270 612410.

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