New here - very frustrated at care being given

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by Ted123, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. Ted123

    Ted123 Registered User

    Feb 27, 2007
    Hello Good People

    This is my first post here so bear with me.

    My 87 year old father has vascular dementia and has been home for 2 months after a 6 week spell in hospital where amongst other complications he was diagnosed with a blood clot.

    On discharge a care plan was put in place by the hospital social services which included administering his Warfarin which he needs on a lifetime basis.

    During this time we received notice from the Ani-Coagulation Unit that something was amiss and sure enough it transpired that only half the required dosage was being given.

    Two weeks or so ago the care was outsourced by the hospital social services to a private contractor.

    On Saturday whilst I was at my parents the care worker came and administered th Warfarin. When I asked if they were sure it was the correct dosage I asked them to check his log book from the clinic. Cut a long story short they had given half the dosage for the previous 5 days on their own admittance and this particular carer knew nothing of the existence of the Warfarin log book. Surely knowing to check the log book is standard practice in administering Warfarin.

    So having called the GP out of hours number it was suggested my father go to the hospital for a blood test just to be on the safe side.

    Subsequently, we were advised of what Warfarin to take between now and Wednesday but to get it checked again before Wednesday.

    My father has gone to the anti-coag clinic today and got revised dosage but has to go again on Thursday.

    His next scheduled appt wasn't until 10/10.

    This means 3 completely unscheduled hosptital visits for a man with dementia for whom life is very confusing and for whom we find it very difficult to get to unscheduled appointments ( I won't bore you with those stories - I'm sure many of your are familiar with similar)

    My mother is 82 and doing her level best to care for him at home but it just seems to me that the care he is receiving is just making a bad situation worse.

    Really frustrated and just don't what action we can take as a family to make sure this never happens again.

    It ain't rocket science :mad:
  2. Grannie G

    Grannie G Volunteer Moderator

    Apr 3, 2006
    Welcome to TP Ted.

    The only way you can ensure it doesn`t happen again is to write a formal complaint to those involved.

    It is careless practice, IMHO and should not go uncriticised.

    If we want good care, I`m afraid we have to demand it. Private contractors do not operate a service, they operate a business, and I truly believe the introduction of contracted out services has been detrimental to all areas of the Welfare Sector.
  3. Ted123

    Ted123 Registered User

    Feb 27, 2007
    Thanks Grannie G for the swift reply.

    We'll be calling the hospital social services tomorrow to see what their response is.

    IMHO it goes beyond careful practice when potentially life threatening. Warfarin it would seem is critical to my fathers well-being.

    Thanks again and I'll let you know how it goes.

    Anyone with similar experiences please feel free to post and let me know. Just so we know what else might be round the corner :)
  4. jenniferpa

    jenniferpa Volunteer Moderator

    Jun 27, 2006
    Hi Ted and welcome to Talking Point

    I have to say that my only expereince with Wafarin therapy is second hand: that is my MIL takes it and has done for over 20 years but is still able to manage the issues surrounding it (restricted diet, frequent doctor's visits etc). However my mother was also recommended for it because of her atrial fibrillation. However, after discussion with me she declined this therapy - at the time even though she didn't have dementia then, it was obvious that she wouldn't be able to manage all the stuff that came along with it. I don't know if it was the right or wrong decision - she lived 10 years before having her debilitating strokes. I have however had some experience with private care agencies and I have to say they are mixed. When you have regular staff they are often extremely good, but there is no doubt that on occasion inadequate staffing means that you get whoever is available, and they may a) not know the person they are dealing with b) not know the routines or c) not know how to get into the house :rolleyes: I found the system sufficiently unreliable to realise that this could not be a long-term solution for my mother (even a 1% failure rate is too much in this situation), so I don't envy you trying to sort this out.

    Since they are being provided by social services, even if a private agency, I would make a formal complaint to social services. I don't think on medication issues you can afford to pussy-foot around the issue. You can also use the csci website to complain both about private agencies and the council service

    Best wishes
  5. elaineo2

    elaineo2 Registered User

    Jul 6, 2007
    leigh lancashire
    Dear Ted,Who gives the warfarin?To give a wrong dosage can cause severe problems.What was the dosage given and what sould it have been?Contact the anti coag clinic immediatley and get clarification on dosage.Also contact the care givers employer.Is this person administering medication actually qualified?It doesn't sound like it to me if they are unaware of INR results and warfarin dosages to be given.please post elainex
  6. Cate

    Cate Registered User

    Jul 2, 2006
    Newport, Gwent
    Hi Ted

    I totally agree with Sylvia, put your complaint in writing to the Local Health Board, this really shouldn’t go unreported.

    I would also very sternly point out the difficulties in arranging for your dad to go for checkups. I would request that considering that these appointments are due to their error, and on more than one occasion, the clear lack of communication on the required dose, the stress that this has caused both your parents, you now, and in the future require domiciliary visits at home.



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