Category Archives: abuse

Jeremy Hunt – how dare you?

Is someone having a laugh at the expense of the electorate?

Is this whole coalition government having laugh after laugh at the expense of the electorate?

Jeremy Richard Streynsham Hunt is allegedly the recently appointed Secretary of State for Health.  He has now opened his big mouth and spat out words that he should have swallowed long ago.  Does he not have a way of engaging his brain before opening his mouth?

Hunt has declared that he would favour a change in the law to halve the limit on abortions from 24 weeks into a pregnancy to 12.  Read all about it here.  He’s entitled to his own opinion, of course, but he should keep it to himself until there is a clear need for him to open his mouth and speak.  Why speak out days before the Conservative Party Conference?  There must be a reason somewhere – but I doubt it.

He’s a joke.  He was a joke as Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.  He was a joke when it came to fiddling his expenses, fiddling his tax liability to the tune of £100,000.  He was accused by a fellow MP of lying to Parliament.  What an upright, upstanding and healthy career he’s not had.

His greatest achievement so far is a failed attempt to export marmalade to Japan.    Amongst other failed attempts to run a business .

He is an abomination now.

Anagrams come to my aid:

Jeremy Hunt = The jury men

Jeremy Richard Streynsham Hunt =  Shhh!  Tyrannic majesty murderer

I feel better now.

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Why I despise the so-called system of care for vulnerable people

I’ve been fairly controlled over recent weeks, months or even years.  I suppose I’ve been waiting and hoping for a chink of light to emerge, for a culture change to emerge, for a way forward to emerge in the so-called system of care that we have allowed to be in place.

However, I am reaching screaming point.  Hardly surprising.  When someone is destroyed because of absent systems of protection, and when it then takes almost 5 years to work your way through to a full understanding of why the so-callled system of care for vulnerable people fails to provide decent care so very often – that’s when you reach screaming point.

Time and time again, the CQC comes up with yet another report as it did today, with a report into the ‘care’ afforded to people with learning disabilities.  Or rather the lack of  care.  I’ve read it all, but there’s not much hope for real change.

Week and month after week and month, our government comes up with …… not one single plan to improve things.

Year after year, the same old same old same old gets published in the press, reported on radio, featured on TV.

Still nothing changes, so I need to scream now.  It won’t change anything – but it may just help me to scream.

[Next section of this particular blog post: Deleted temporarily pending the return of sense to the world of care.]

Therewith, I will leave this one for today.  But not for long.

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Filed under abuse, accountability, care, care homes, Care UK, dementia care, Islington, justice, liability, Local Authority, neglect, nursing, personal responsibility, professional responsibility, suffering

What is this thing called care?

It makes me angry to read the BBC report that Ken Maitland, who had dementia, was visited in his own home by 106 different care workers in one single year.  Jeannette Maitland started to write a list of the names of the assorted care workers so that she could get to know them.

I did exactly as Jeanette Maitland did when my own relative with dementia began to receive so-called support in her own home.  She lived alone then, so I hoped that if I got to know the names of the people visiting her, I’d be able to talk to her about them and encourage her to accept their support.  Before long, I was distressed to find that – within the space of just 2 weeks – she was visited by 14 different ‘names’.   She had been allocated just two daily visits from one carer at each visit.  I could only imagine how distressed she must have felt too.  I spoke to the local council but they weren’t interested.  The social worker did nothing to help.

When she moved into extra-care sheltered housing, the social worker assured me that the problem would be removed, because the Housing Group that owned and ran the housing also owned and ran the on-site domiciliary care agency providing the on-site support 24/7 to the residents, each in their own flat.

By this time, she was in need of 4 visits per day.  She was still paying for her housing and for the visits by the support workers.

The problem was not removed – it was made worse.

“I’m fed up with all these different people coming into my flat” she said to me.

She withdrew.  She started to refuse them access to her flat.   She started to retreat to the bathroom.  She just withdrew.

I spoke this time with the on-site manager of the extra-care sheltered housing.   She said there was nothing she would do because “we like our staff to gain experience”.

I objected to my relative suffering so that the staff could gain experience.

What I didn’t know then, though, was that all the staff from this so-called ‘on-site 24/7 domiciliary care agency’ owned and run by the Housing Group were all acquired from numerous and different agencies, on an ad hoc basis, with no training, no job security, nothing that could be called care.  They were just casual labour.

It was in 2006 and 2007 that my relative encountered the same problems that Ken and Jeannette Maitland experienced far more recently.  Plus ҫa change plus c’est la même chose.  Have we learned nothing about dementia care in the intervening years?  Have we learned nothing?

What kind of animal have we unleashed and allowed it to be called ‘care’?


Filed under abuse, care, dementia, dementia care, domiciliary homecare

To care or not to care?

Imagine the 83-year old person in the following story was your own relative.

The article is here : Islington Gazette – dated 10 February 2012 – a few extracts below:

‘The Nursing and Midwifery Council’s (NMC) Conduct and Competence Panel is investigating five nurses’ care and treatment of an 83-year-old woman who died after spending around 10 days 
at Lennox House Nursing Home in Durham Road, Islington.

The panel heard this week that the elderly woman was taken to Accident and Emergency at Whittington Hospital in a diabetic coma on December 8, 2007. She died on December 27.

It is alleged that several serious signs of deterioration in the two days leading up to her hospital admission weren’t acted on.

These included agitation and a tendency to lay on the floor – symptoms which retired nurse Sue Bradell-Smith, who carried out the investigation of Lennox House in 2008, said were abnormal and would have made her “very worried”.

Other allegations include a failure to monitor the patient’s condition and diabetes, failing to create a pain management plan and feeding the patient fluids orally although her swallowing difficulties were known.

According to the home’s records, by the evening of December 8 she was suffering with continuous muscle spasms and had dysphasia, an inability to speak – yet it is claimed that the emergency services weren’t called straight away.

NMC’s solicitor John Lucarotti said the treatment provided fell far below what is expected of a nurse.’

How would you feel if you are now being required to understand alleged facts that are totally new to you – almost four-and-a-half years after the death of your relative?

You are now being given to understand that the care home manager was in the building all day long, right through from 8.30 am to 8 pm in the evening – but couldn’t be bothered to get off her backside to attend to one 83- year old in desperate need of care and attention.

You are now being given to understand that a nurse came to see the manager and told her that the 83-year old was not well.  Still the manager did nothing.

You are now being given to understand that nobody involved considers that the care they provided was poor.

You are now being given to understand that the manager didn’t react or even care much when the nurse told her the 83-year old was in spasm, unable to speak, unable to swallow.

Can you imagine how you would be feeling now?



Filed under abuse, accountability, Care UK, dementia care, Islington, liability, neglect, personal responsibility, professional responsibility

Panorama and Care in the UK

I wasn’t sure whether I could watch tonight’s Panorama programme – not wanting to see yet another TV programme about abuse and neglect in a care home, yet at the same time knowing that I had to watch because of my own experience of care in the UK.  If only because I too had a relative who was neglected in a care home.

Having watched the programme, I begin to understand why Care UK told me that the ‘records’ concerning the employment-status and suitability-status of 5 care workers from the Philippines working at Lennox House care home in London/Islington/Holloway had all been lost – because the laptop containing those records had been stolen.

Pull the other one!!!!  Care UK – pull the other one.  I’ve got another leg left because you’ve only stripped me of one leg so far.  You also stripped me of my life, Care UK.  You stole my life along with the other life that you stole, that of a very able 83 year old with dementia who was place into your care because you claimed to care.  But Care UK didn’t care enough to care.


Filed under abuse, accountability, care, care homes, Care UK, dementia, dementia care

NMC hearings schedules – aka close to Care in the UK

I omitted to post this :  NMC Hearings Schedule – 6th to 17th February 2012 – at Euston House, London.

All in the best interests of Care in the UK.

More later, but click here for the charges.  Same as above link – but I wouldn’t want anyone to miss it.

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Filed under abuse, care, care homes, Care UK, dementia, dementia care, Islington, justice, liability, Local Authority, nursing, personal responsibility, professional responsibility, suffering

Fine words butter no parsnips in residential care

Andrew Lansley has come up with the revolutionary concept that there will be a code of conduct and minimum training standards for all care workers operating in the field of adult social care.  Or is it perhaps a slow evolution of care?

He said, allegedly: “Good local supervision offers support every day. Distant national regulation can often only react after the event.  Employers must always take responsibility and be accountable for the staff they employ. But, we recognise that more can be done to support employers in this and a code of conduct and clear minimum training standards will provide important clarity in this area.  These measures will help employers to better consider the skills profile of potential employees and ensure that patients and service users get the care and support they need.”

Somewhat late in the day, for some of us, so forgive me for shouting ABOUT TIME TOO!!

But, it’s the response from Care UK and its  Managing Director of Residential Care, Toby Siddall, that has caused me great discomfort :

 “Directors at Care UK see codes of conduct as only part of the solution.   Matters of technical competence and behaviour are already an important part of the employment contract for Care UK employees. Whether or not a member of a care home team treats people with dignity is about the leadership, training and recruitment of people with the right personal values – not about a line in a contract.”

Well, well, well!!!  Perhaps, Mr Siddall, you would care to explain just how long it is that ‘matters of technical competence and behaviour’ have been an important part of the employment contract for Care UK employees.  Since when?  Tell me the date! 

They certainly weren’t in place in Care UK and at Lennox House care home at the end of 2007 and in 2008, when Lennox House was ‘investigated’ twice within 8 months   and not allowed to accept new residents for a year while a whole host of measures enabled Care UK to  drag itself from the gutter to an acceptable standard of care provision. 

As for treating people with dignity – that was absent too when those residents were left dead in their beds for days, as the Islington Tribune reported. 

Of course, the Reports of three (or more?) investigations are all held behind closed doors – far away from daylight, so as to protect the best interests of Care UK.  The best interests of the Leadership of Care UK including Mike Parish, Chief Executive, and the then MD of Residential Care Tony Hosking, and the Managers and Deputy Managers of the whole not-fit-for-purpose care providers, of those in Islington who commissioned and allowed Lennox House to function when it was not fit for purpose, the then CSCI (now CQC) to name but a few.  Their best interests are forever preserved by the hiding of those reports.   

 If leadership can be held responsible, as Care UK now seems to understand, how come heads never roll when people die as a result of sloppy leadership and sub-standard care? 

Unless and until it is a requirement for all those Reports, and others too of similar investigations, to be published and available in the public domain so that everyone can see what went on behind closed doors – nothing will ever change.

Or could it be that too many Directorships spoil the concentration?  9  for Toby Siddall alone.  And for Michael Robert Parish …….


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Care UK & private equity & The Guardian

Every now and then you come across something that just takes your breath away.  Even though you may have been a Grauniad (sic!) reader since the age of 16, when you were first required to tell your English teacher which newspapers you had read each single day of the school  week.  Yes, I am old enough to know all about that – thanks to Miss Edwards!

This piece by Kirsty Scott in the Guardian has done just that.  It has rendered me breathless and speechless, almost.  Is this a journalist writing as only a journalist should be required to do – as a free spirit (*ish!!) remembering the need to earn a living and to pay the family bills, yet at the same time not selling her/his soul.  Not governed by anything other than the real free spirit of journalism.

Or is this someone acting as a paid promoter for Care UK?  Promoting private equity to boot!!!

I would dearly love to open the closed eyes of anyone who falls for this kind of promo.

Care UK killed my own relative within 10 days of arrival in a Care UK care home.

How did Care UK manage (for want of a better word) to do that?

Because Care UK had absolutely no systems in place to provide the kind of caring care that one 83 year old required – let alone the other residents, some of whom were younger and in far less need of care, and some were older in greater need of care.

I’m only talking about 3 years ago too, so don’t get the wrong impression of my anger at Kirsty Scott’s article.

Without permission, Kirsty Scott,  I bin your report.  I am not impressed.

As for the Guardian’s Social Care section  …. …. ……. it has been binned also.


Filed under abuse, care, care homes, Care UK, dementia care

Do we care more about dogs than we care about our senior citizens?

A man has been charged with causing suffering to a Metropolitan Police dog after a door was slammed on its head.

The short story is here for all to read.

Apparently, Lukasz Sklepkowski, 28, of no fixed address, has been charged with causing unnecessary suffering under the Animal Welfare Act.

You know what’s coming next …

We’ve had a week of CQC reports on hospital neglect of our mature citizens, followed hotly by another CQC report on the starvation of same mature citizens in our so-called care homes.

Can someone explain to me why one dog should be more precious than thousands of vulnerable people in need of care?

At least the dog had several police officers to protect it during its activities.

There is allegedly the Animal Welfare Act.

Where is the Human Welfare Act?  I’ve searched but haven’t found it so far.









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Filed under abuse, care, care homes, growing older, neglect, NHS, professional responsibility

A personal message to The Horse

This is a personal message from me to The Horse.

This particular Horse has no better purpose in their sad little life than to stalk  and to track me.

Morning, noon and night,  The Horse is positioned at the keyboard, trying to focus on the next fence, hoping that it will come towards and within their peripheral vision and then become the centre point of their breathtakingly boring existence.  Panting and puffing, The Horse must know that it’s a waste of their time.

The Horse is an Outsider, all at very long distance, that is, because this particular Horse lives thousands of miles away, but still would profess to know more about life in this once Great Britain of ours than we know ourselves.   The Horse was exported from these shores circa 30 years ago, but still knows more about day-to-day life here than most of us know ourselves!  That takes some doing.  Or it did before the advent of Google.

Now is the time for all good Googles to come to the aid of The Horse.

The Horse’s life is perhaps pointless and empty, so I should be flattered and encourged to know that I am at least giving meaning to a life .

I feel desperately sorry for The Horse –  if only because so desperate is The Horse that others have been enticed to sniff at the nosebag of The Horse, all by virtue of a message sent round from The Horse to the under-horselings.  Or are those others sniffing at The Horse’s droplets in a fashion similar to that of our grandparents as they strove to shovel up and spread  muck around the roses?

The Horse is welcome to any fragrant droplets that fall from my fingertips, here and in all the other places The Horse tracks me to.

Bye bye, Horse.  You have now been put out to grass, out to pasture, out into the wilderness of usefulness.

I hope you will miss me, Horse, as much as I won’t miss you.

All you need to do is to subscribe, Horse, and you will save yourself a huge amount of energy and long-distance broadband usage.  As for all the other places you track and trace, many have already become aware of your interest.  They thank you and your followers for boosting their viewing figures!

I should perhaps add that I am not the only one being stalked by this particular Horse.  For some unfathomable reason, The Horse feeds on dismantling every single word that is written by any one of the apples of this Horse’s eye.  Para by para, line by line, word by word …. that’s what The Horse feeds on.   Straight to The Horse’s mouth!!

I hope you have a good retirement, Horse, and that your under-horselings will soon rid themselves of your uncomfortable influence.

PS added, to comment on recent contacts from The Horse and from The Horse’s underlings who all seem to be jumping to order

To answer The Horse’s question, yes, I do think you should be concerned – you should be seriously concerned.   You have compromised your position for years now, much to the amazement and the disgust of others who have no choice but to put up with your astonishing heartlessness – so it is about time you looked long and hard at your motives.  It’s also about time those who pay for your services should also look at their own reasons for keeping you on their pay-roll, even though that pay-roll may be more perks than bucks.  The Horse knows all about bucks, but has forgotten how to care about The Heart.

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