"Coconut & Fruitcake-A comedy of errors"

About: Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust / Adult mental health

(as a service user),

Coconut & Fruitcake-A comedy of errors

Coconut & Friutcake will be my first published work, hopefully by the end of 2010. Within this horrifically tragic comedy there is reference to 15 years input from mental health services, both as acute inpatient and community. Predominantly the story will be set in Cumbria, but London, Yorkshire and International slips into the story from time to time.

I currently have the luxury of board and lodgings on a unit in Cumbria and the advantage of being so bored that I have been able to draft my first copy. Unfortunately our Occupational Therapist has been off sick for almost 3 weeks which has left me climbing the walls!

As I refuse to lock myself in my room, and as I am not allowed my own laptop and as the resource suit has such archaic technology. I have been able to pull together the content of my biography/screenplay/play/evidence I believe, of breeches to my Human Rights, instead of falling through the floor into depression.

As I am sure, reader, you can imagine this has gone down like a lead balloon. Firstly I was upgraded from a voluntary inmate to a section 3 (even though in my view no resistance to treatment was evident), and secondly (after, I believe, being overdosed twice after I had checked in) I was accused of non compliance.

Thirdly, I and numerous others were denied our democratic right to vote!

I could go on but it makes me want to vomit (oops, there's evidence of a new disorder to add to my insanity reference).

I am fully aware there is some excellent practitioners out there and even some human managers but living on the inside, with intelligence, excellent communication skills and a Titanium backbone gets you nowhere fast up here.

I wish all you guys out there speedy recoveries. As day 20 in the Big Brother house with no one on the outside who cares is chaffing my soul just a tad at the minute.

Perhaps I'll have the joy of an updated Care Plan in the next hour-only been waiting a fortnight!

Will try to upload the Chapter Listing for 'Coconut and Fruitcake', tomorrow that's if all the plugs have not been cut off the computers!

Do you have a similar story to tell? Tell your story & make a difference ››


Response from Patient Opinion

Dear 'Coconut-Fruitcake',

We just wanted to let you know that due to a technical problem at our end, Cumbria Partnership were not aware of your posting until Thursday afternoon. We wanted to just write a quick message to let you know.

Thanks so much for sharing your story with us,

The Patient Opinion team

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Response from

Dear Coconut,

Thank you for your posting, your comments are very jovial, but I can see you have some real issues which we would like to provide clarification on, if you would like to contact us direct, we would very much appreciate this and will happily work with you to try and resolve these issues.

You mention a number of things which I would like to comment on:

· Occupational Therapist – rather than Occupational Therapy (OT), I believe you are referring to the role of the Activity Coordinator which is often mistaken for OT. When staff are off work for any reason we will cover for this absence within the team. If there is absence, the role of the Activity Coordinator is allocated to staff on a shift by shift basis to ensure there is continuity. I am sorry if you have felt bored, we would encourage you to take up the activities on offer you may wish to talk to staff on the ward about this. We are always open to suggestions about what activities people want to do, so please do feel free to put forward your suggestions.

· Boredom – as above there are activities available, but as well as this we have arts and crafts, books, games, DVD’s, Nintendo Wii, jigsaws, table tennis, sometimes snooker/pool and we have equipment for outdoor activities.

· Overdose – this is something that we take extremely seriously and any cases would be reported with actions to prevent reoccurrence. We could not comment of individual cases to protect confidentiality.

· Laptop – I am afraid that we cannot accept laptops on the wards; these are valuable items which we could not guarantee to be safe. We do however provide access to computers in certain areas. Service users in the Carleton Clinic for example can use the Knowledge Exchange which provides two computers with free internet access and on Hadrian for example there is a new laptop and docking station installed in the newly modernised activity room.

· Right to vote – I am sorry that you feel this way. We have investigated this matter and can confirm that the organisation has followed the guidance as set out by the Care Quality Commission, which complies with the Representation of the People Act 2000.

· Care plan – care planning is an integral part of your admission, having to wait two weeks is unacceptable and once again I would encourage you to speak with your named nurse or the ward manager about this. For assurance purposes we have, however asked all ward managers to review all care plans to ensure these are up to date.

I wish to take this opportunity to wish you a speedy recovery.


Andrea Greenwood

Inpatient Services Manager

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