"Discharging vulnerable elderly patients before they are ready"

About: Castle Rise Hull / Hull social services Hull Royal Infirmary

(as a relative),

My mum was in the Hull Royal Infirmary being treated initially with pneumonia, low load pressure and kidney issues (dehydration). She was very confused due to infection and everything which went with this. She was unable to get out of bed unaided although hospital nurses said other wise together with intermediate and physiotherapy assessments.

So I was surprised when I got a message from the social worker saying she was totally satisfied that all parties were in agreement that she was medically and physically fit to go home. Having just myself had surgery I sent my nephew into the hospital who with my mothers consent made a video of her which showed that she could not lift her legs off the bed and had to be manhandled onto a commode. I then contacted the social worker at the hospital who was devastated to hear this.

All we wanted was some respite and rehab so we could get her home again to the care package she had in place before going into hospital. My mum was released that day to the Castle Rise home for what we thought was rehab and monitoring. This was a discharge to a step down bed with a care package in place but staff were unsure why my Mother had been sent there.

We were told that a care team would be sent to re-assess her within a couple of days, a decision would then be made about ongoing care, return to home etc. We saw no one.

Visiting her after that, it was clear to me that my mums needs were not being met. She was left in her tiny room much of the day. Staff came to feed and water her, meals were put in front of her and then taken away untouched. My mother was yellow, distressed and confused. I expressed my concern and disgust. She was having no observations done and I honestly thought she was going to die.

The social worker called me to say she had took on board my concerns and asked for the intermediate team to go to visit my mum on the Wednesday. A very nice and sympathetic gentleman named Dave called me to say that he was at Castle Rise and had called an ambulance for my mum. Her blood pressure was dangerously low and her body temperature was 34 degrees and he had a duty of care to get her to hospital although the ambulance men present disagreed and Dave insisted.

I rang him the next day to tell him that they had pumped my mum with 6 bags of fluid and that in my opinion he had saved her life. I was so grateful. She's 87 and does not deserve been treated in such a terrible way. I do blame the hull Royal and all the assessors and Castle Rise for the lack of proper care.

If it had not been for the social worker and Dave and my constant pressure to do something my mum would have died

Surely there is something key missing from the hospital discharging vulnerable elderly patients before they are ready? I understand the hospital’s need for beds but unless the patient is discharged to a suitable unit for recuperation, discharge does not seem appropriate. The home my Mother was sent to cannot have been appropriate for her needs, they did not know why she was there!

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