"Trying to access physiotherapy services"

About: Ayrshire Central Hospital / Douglas Grant Rehabilitation Centre North Ayrshire Council

(as a service user),

I had a stroke just over 2 years ago. At first I was an inpatient at Irvine central and I got at least an hour of physio a day. My physio Audrey was great, she worked me hard and I got walking again with a stick. Then I went to the day hospital for ten months to have more physio, they worked mostly on my arm, I don’t think my walking improved at all during this time. I also only had 15 minutes of physio each time I went, I complained about this and the physio shouted at me that this wasn’t true. Then I was discharged. I feel you can’t complain or you are ostracised

The community physio came out about 6 weeks ago to assess me. She said she couldn’t help me, that I wouldn’t improve any more. She wanted to teach my son exercises for my arm but I want professional help, my son could do more damage. My son is also busy, he doesn’t have time to do someone else’s job for them.

I had a splint for my arm that didn’t fit so the physio saw this and referred me back to orthotics. A few weeks ago I got a new splint that fits. When the splint is on I feel it’s doing me good but I can’t get it on myself. My son can’t do it either, he’s scared he breaks my fingers. I asked the orthotist if my son could take me to the hospital every second day for them to put it on but he said no. My son then phoned the community physio to ask how we get the splint on, he left a message but she hasn’t got back to us.

I also have an orthotic for my leg that goes up to below my knee. My orthotist had a plan to make it shorter and shorter over time so that it just went over my ankle. He has now retired and this plan doesn’t seem to be happening. I think I could put a smaller orthotic on by myself, this would mean I could use the bathroom at night – at the moment I have to use bottles and this is not easy.

I want the community physio to come out and work on my arm. I don’t want my son to have to take on another job. I feel the physio on my arm does really help. My arm is very tight and sticks to my ribs but after physio it moves easier and there is less pain, this would make it easier for the carers to wash me. I would like to have a splint for my arm that I can put on and is not just sitting in a drawer. I would also like to have a leg splint that I can put on by myself, I think I could then get to the shower by myself, maybe then I wouldn’t need carers and I would save the council a fortune.

My friend had cancer, had his operation and is back at the bowling club. Two years down the line I’m still sitting like this with so many problems.

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Responses

Response from Eunice Goodwin, Patient Feedback Manager for NHS Ayrshire and Arran, Quality Improvement and Governance Team, NHS Ayrshire and Arran

picture of Eunice Goodwin

Dear stevenston,

I am sorry, it sounds as if you are quite frustrated with all this, so what can we do?

There seem to be two things here we can do for you. Firstly,can you contact me with your details, name, date of birth and a way of contacting you please? If you do want to contact me, you can email me on eunice.goodwin@aapct.scot.nhs.uk or phone me on 01563 826222.

The manager responsible for orthotic said ‘I would suggest a review appointment is made to address the concerns and possibly discuss the options about putting on the splints. If your son could attend that would be very helpful. 

Just a cautious note, the orthotist concerned has probably said that depending on progress it may be possible to reduce the splinting on the leg but this is not always possible. However, if you can make an appointment for review, we will see if that is possible for you.

Secondly, the senior manager responsible for ‘rehabilitation and reablement’ has offered to get you a review also. Once he has your details, he will get the best person for the job and it is likely to be someone you are familiar with. I do hope this help.

Thank you for contacting us it is only by telling us your story, that we can address it.

Best wishes,

Eunice

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