"My mother's poor care at Tameside"

About: Grange View Tameside General Hospital / Accident and emergency

(as a relative),

I feel that Tameside hospital caused my pensioner mother to become so ill and immobile she has never recovered enough to return home.

My mother was not physically ill or injured when she went to Tameside hospital, she was suffering from a form of psychosis. Earlier in the year she had spent two months on the mental health unit with the same problem. However, she made a full recovery without additional medication and continued to attend the unit as an outpatient.

Five months later the symptoms returned and she was badly in need of psychiatric care. In late August 2013 she rang the police who arranged for an ambulance to take her to the hospital.

From the moment she entered Tameside hospital she became a victim of what I feel were serious mistakes, followed by covering up and lies. My mother became so physically ill (while I feel they were ignoring her psychosis) that she was on a medical ward for a month. Then, still unwell she was moved to Grange view which is owned and run by Tameside hospital for a further two months.

Even then my mother was not well enough to go home. Following three months of hospitalisation, lack of exercise and an ignored fall she never regained her mobility. She lost her voice when she had an allergic reaction and that too has not returned. She became deconditioned, depressed, withdrawn and unable to communicate. She was sent to a care home, where she remains in this state of deterioration. Sadly my mother will remain there for the rest of her days.

Tameside hospital had her medical notes for reference. In addition, I gave the doctor from a&e her mother’s medical history. I explained that my mother was a psychiatric patient and not physically ill. I gave details of her mother’s medication including a penicillin allergy.

Here are some examples of the unacceptable way my mother was treated by Tameside hospital:

( a ) refused to acknowledge she was a psychiatric patient, and have the psychosis she was presenting treated.

( b ) refused to contact her psychiatrist despite assuring me they would. (The only reason her psychiatrist became remotely involved is because I made direct contact with his office. This was when I discovered my mother was being discharged after 72 hours. I told the hospital that my mother was not leaving until she had been treated her psychosis. It was unsafe for her to leave. That was the reason she was brought to the hospital)

( c ) informed by staff the mental health unit was full, with a waiting list of three weeks

( d ) put her on a general medical ward, where she did not belong. Not only was she treated medically badly, she was humiliated by the situation, as some of the other patients considered her odd behaviour to be a source of amusement.

( e ) given four consecutive doses of an antibiotic to which they knew she had an allergy.

( f ) antibiotics were unnecessary anyway as all her tests results were clear

( g ) collaboration by the staff who did everything possible to cover their mistakes

( h ) failed to inform us about the mistakes, and that she had been given penicillin.

( I ) prevented her from attending a much needed appointment with her psychiatrist.

( j ) prevented her from seeing a social worker.

( k ) she had a fall which left her badly bruised

My mother became very ill. She was immobile incontinent had breathing difficulties and lost her voice. For four days, I was frantic with worry as I watched my mother’s health deteriorate and had no idea why. Yet the staff knew why, but did not say.

I read her medical notes, and discovered my mother had been given penicillin. I confronted the nurse in charge, who refused to accept my mother was allergic to penicillin. This nurse became angry when I was said my mother was most definitely allergic to the drug, but still refused to add it to her notes. Days later when she developed a rash was this nurse was forced to admit it. However, the nurse still would not include it in her notes

When I questioned the staff they denied all knowledge of her mother falling. However when she was admitted to Grange view three weeks later, the bruising was still bad enough to warrant photographs being taken by the person in charge.

I made a formal complaint to the hospital, which was made up of twelve complaints. I also asked them to fund my mother’s care costs, which is the least they could do. I was disgusted by their response and their refusal to fund my mother’s care.

The hospital exaggerated their apologies for the minor complaints, in an attempt to overshadow the more serious matters which have been denied.

Tameside Hospital have played a huge part in my mother’s quality of life being reduced to zero. She has given up, and although she is not dead, she may as well be according to her. She repeatedly tells me that she wishes she were dead.

I do not give up easily, and will continue my plight to seek justice.

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Responses

Response from Lindsay Stewart, Deputy Director of Nursing, Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust

On behalf of Tameside Hospital NHS Foundation Trust I would like to extend my sincere apologies to the daughter of one of our patients who has had cause to outline her story in detail.

I am very familiar with this specific complaint and the daughter’s concerns and the comprehensive investigation that has taken place has been closely monitored. I am sorry that our investigation took longer than expected however the complexity of the issue warranted in depth review and analysis.

I cannot respond to the detail in this public arena because of my obligations to respect confidentiality but I can assure the complainant that all of the issues raised in the posting in relation to the care have been responded to. We have undertaken a significant improvement programme since the timeframe covered by the concerns and we provided a full response to the issues raised in detail.

The Trust responded to the complainants concerns for monetary recompense as referred to in the posting and advised as to the correct processes to be followed in relation to this.

I am very sorry that the complainant – the patient’s daughter is unhappy with the factual response provided

Kind regards

John Goodenough

Director of Nursing

’Would you like to help the hospital to improve its services further? We are currently looking for patients and carers to become involved in a development called “Patient Stories”. We want to know more about our services from the point of view of those who received them – what was good, bad, what could be improved, what should be changed. Want to know more about what’s involved? Please contact John Goodenough, Director of Nursing at

john.goodenough@tgh.nhs.uk

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