Thanks everyone, I am truly worried for her and can feel the tears well up in my eyes, but there is nothing anyone can do now other than have hope. I'm off today and its going to be a long long day with nothing to distract me.
Here's a wonderful contribution by Stephen Ridley and fitting for the times, I certainly liked it
My request to be deployed to London has be denied at the moment, this may change dependent on need, so for now I am carrying on at my own Trust.
And to finish me off I got a call from the CH manager to tell me about the Covid-19 outbreak and how mum is more agitated with care staff wearing masks and gowns, and perhaps I could make a personalised video to help calm her. I'm not kidding but I asked what her point of the phone call was?? I pointed out I already knew about the outbreak on Monday soe her news was alittle late. So I went into a lecture on the fact most of the residents probably have the virus including my mum, and how are they going to get her to watch a video when she won't even watch the TV anymore, not to mention an increase in confusion/delerium can be a sign of infection in the elderly let alone dementia. Perhaps they might like to get all the residents swabbed? This was while I was working and to be honest I think she was just testing the water with me.
Anyway I then asked about if mum should deteriorate and become end of life, my expectation is that I will be allowed to visit her. Now this is where things got interesting, because she said they were not allowing visits even at end of life, so I challenged her on that, to which she changed her approach slightly. I decided to call the head office of the care home company and had a long conversation over this, and I was assured 'it would not come to that' if things to change for ther worse, they would work around it. So I then asked if a company directive has been given, to which the nice chap on the end of the phone said no directive has been given. I made it very clear that I will see my mother if she becomes end of life even if I have to sign a disclaimer -he said it wouldn't come to that, the concern is to protect anyone visiting in end of life scenarios.
At the end of the day I think people have to be given the choice and the risks balanced versus not visiting a loved one at the end of their lives. What is interesting is that as I persisted the standing changed from 'no' to 'we'll cross that bridge if we get to it'. Yes this virus is awful, but not seeing someone close to us at the end of their life is equally as dreadful. PPE can be made available for visitors and it should be when these scenarios arise.
Having slept on things I can't help feeling very guilty as things are now with mum, I am the one responsible for placing her into a care home where I thought she would be safe ..and now I can't undo it
Hi @Palerider, just catching up with your situation. Firstly you can't feel guilty at all about finding a care home for Mum it was the absolutely right thing to do and she has been far more content in that environment up until now - if she had remained at home you would have had many more issues before this stage and potentially the same scenario. So you need to strike that thought if you can.
I feel very strongly about the end of life scenario, you should be allowed to visit if you so wish. It sounds as though that may be likely now, should that scenario occur, but only as you have pushed the matter which is worrying for others.
I'm sorry that I can only offer words of support to you, I can imagine though what you and others are having to go through.
If you had kept your mum at home it would be difficult to self isolate whilst caring for her, and she could have been at risk of catching the virus from you as a frontline worker. would she have been able to cope staying indoors our would she have got distressed? Sending virtual hugs
@Palerider, my SIL died last week in her care home, she didn't have the virus but died from Alzheimer's. The Care home were excellent, facilitated both her daughters spending most of the final couple of days with her and ensured SIL wad comfortable and not distressed. So it can be done and I'm sure, if it comes to it, you will be able to see your mum. But hopefully it won't become an issue. You are doing an amazing job both on the NHS side and in continuing to look after your mum's best interests.
I can understand you feeling guilty @Palerider, but if your mum had stayed at home she may not have been any safer. If you'd left her to work she could have gone wandering or you could have brought the virus home. If you stayed at home to care for her you would have been feeling guilty about the people you weren't able to help at work.
My mum's care home is on lock down, but it's been made very clear that family will be able to visit in an end-of-life situation, so I'm pleased you could clarify that with the head office.
A difficult week with lots of reflection. Thanks for the reassurances over placing mum into care. I'm sure many of us had creeping doubts about the decisions we make.
I spoke with the nurse on mums wing this morning and now 5 residents are Covid-19 positive. Mum remains asymptomatic but she is wandering as usual. I asked how the staff were coping and mums nurse was fab she said 'we've just got to get on with it' and they are ok they have the PPE they need. Good to hear they are coping and getting through caring for our loved ones -very important.
Pleased to hear the staff at the Care Home have the PPE they need @Palerider, that has been an epic fail by this government - they have had since January to prepare for this. A friend of mine works on the wards in our general hospital and she still hasn't got the right kit, but she is being asked to work 7-days a week - it's absolutely shameful. I hope you are faring ok in the circumstances, it must be so difficult not being able to see Mum in these circumstances. I would imagine you are shattered physically and emotionally. Take care of yourself.
SS are so overworked and under resourced that unless it is a crisis or emergency they are unlikely to respond, or that is how it seems to me. and that is probably the way it has to be, though completely irrational because as we all know, if they acted or responded sooner, it would save a lot of resources. And they are human like the rest of us, with their own personal issues to deal with .... be that dementia, divorce, illness, child care, what have you.
But this is not the place for that kind of debate...
I suspect we all know what we should do ( take care of our own health) or should not do , but putting that into practice is at least difficult and often impossible. As you say, being a “ professional “ carer would be a whole lot easier than being emotionally involved as we are with parents, or in my case, partner, with all the expectations that those relationships entail. And my OH responds and behaves very differently towards carers ( when we had someone coming in a couple of times a week to help him get up) than he does to me...which I find very difficult to bear. But he cannot help it and is confused by my anger and frustration, so then I just feel guilty about feeling that way. .
I can see how residential care, the big line that one is so fearful of crossing and to which so much guilt is so often attached , can in fact be an improvement for the cared for person, precisely for the reasons stated above, though it may always feel like a failure and source of shame for the family member/ carer. I think I would sooner pay for a private live in carer than allow someone to profit from our misfortune whilst paying minimum wages to the staff who do the invaluable care work .
So much stuff to work through at every level. But your mum is one lucky person having you.