"How long does a 91 year old have to wait for attention?"

About: Rotherham PCT / Nutritional services (feeds and supplements)

(as the patient),

My father is registered blind and has asked me, his daughter, to write for him;

Before I was diagnosed with an aneurysm my GP was concerned about my weight loss and asked the dietitian to visit, with a view to having some food supplement drinks. She came but I thought was most unhelpful, suggesting that we should buy and make supplementary foods. I am 90 and unable to see, my wife 91 has just has a hip replacement and I think it is totally unacceptable to expect us to shop and then stand to prepare the foods she was suggesting. When I was taken into Doncaster, they were unable to operate immediately because I was told of my under nourished state and slowly built me up with supplement drinks and a prescription for a further supply. I was also sent a letter with a telephone number to order extra when the course was finished. Unfortunately, I have misplaced the letter but my daughter phoned Doncaster who said that the matter would now be dealt with by Rotherham. She phoned Rotherham, who were in my opinion, once again, most unhelpful. I had to visit the GP and as part of the visit I mentioned that I had gained weight whilst taking the supplement drinks, but now that they were finished I was once again underweight.

The GP agreed that I should have a repeat prescription but, after checking with the surgery and being told that it was in he ‘pipeline’ I have heard nothing!

If Doncaster Hospital think that I should have these supplementary drinks and the GP agrees- how long does Rotherham Hospital expect a 91 year old to wait for attention?

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Responses

Response from Helen Wyatt, Manager, Patient and Public Involvement , Quality Assurance Team, Rotherham Clinical Commissioning Group

Thankyou for posting for your father.

I will contact both nutritional services and our prescribing services for further infomation and reply to you shortly.

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Response from Angela Eyre

Thank you for your comments about your dietetic care and the prescribing of supplement drinks.

Our nutritional supplements team have told us this:-

After you were referred to the Rotherham Dietetic Service the Dietitian you saw would have assessed your ability to eat normal food, which would be why it was suggested that you add extra calories to the food you were already eating. This is the advice we would give to patients. Its better if people can increase the calorie content of their diet and for many people this is better than using supplements that most patients find unpalatable.

When you were admitted to Doncaster Hospital, the Dietitian at Doncaster may have felt that a short term supply of supplements would help you get over your lack of appetite. These are not a replacement for normal food, and are only prescribed clinical reasons.

The aneurysm that has been diagnosed by your GP would not normally stop you from eating normal food.

You have told us that because of your age and infirmity that you are now finding it hard to shop and then prepare food. There are other services that may be able to help you with this. You could talk to your GP with your daughter about this support.

Also, if you ring Assessment Direct (which is part of Rotherham Council) on 01709 822330, you may be able to discuss services that would provide you with meals or support.

Organisations like Age Concern can also help with household tasks such as shopping, They can be contacted on 01709 829621.

We are sorry if you felt that the dietetic advice was unhelpful, however supplements are prescribed and assessed for clinical need by a registered Dietitian who can assess your daily intake and requirements.

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