"Not great care in Inverclyde and Larkfield unit "

About: Inverclyde Royal Hospital / Geriatric Assessment Larkfield Unit

(as a relative),

My mother was taken very ill in the elderly day centre at inverclye. she was rushed to inverclyde which was next door to the unit. We thought she would pass away that weekend but she came back to us although a totally different person. she wouldnt talk to us she wasnt interested in anything.

She would shove us away when we came near to her.

We had great respect for the nursing staff in that ward they were great. But after a couple of days she was taken out of bed and left in a chair by her bedside there. She was put with a table in front of her so she couldnt get up. We had to ask nursing staff on a regular basis to please either get her to the bathroom or to change her as she couldnt go to the toilet herself. On many occasions had soiled herself because she was basically kept in the chair by this table and she couldnt move. She was also on a drip so really tied to the bed with no way of geting to the loo.

She was moved to a ward of 4 where they told us they were waiting for a doctor to arrange for a psychiatric report and she would probably go to the larkfield unit for about 4 weeks. After numerous attempts to discharge her I stopped it every time because this woman was not my mother. These nurses and doctor did not know her before she took not well. We had told them she was a happy go lucky lady with lots of friends, very talkative, loved life and her family was her world. The nurses and doctors would say isnt she coming on well. No, was our answer.

Then our larkfield unit experience started well to begin with. We thought this is great the staff were chatty and friendly they spoke to us on a regular basis and for about a fortnight we were happy mum would make a full recovery. But that wasnt to happen. We then found out she wasnt eating her food which I have to say I didnt blame her as it was revolting, over cooked and nasty. We weren't told that she wasnt eating for ages although they knew she had a problem eating as we had told them this. They just left her, didnt try to feed her or any thing so we asked if my father could come in and feed her on a daily basis. They seemed delighted and said yes please that would be a great help. So my father made his way from everyday by bus and made her home made dinners every day and fed her.

My mum wasnt showered or bathed on a regular basis either. We asked why this wasnt happening and we were told that she didnt want a shower so they left her to smell.

We then got her home to her own house for day visits on a few occasions. We also brought her to our homes. Lots of other things went on as well but there was little improvement in mums condition. Then we made the biggest mistake of all time we said we would like to have her home for christmas we would give her her meds and watch her very carefully then bring her back in the new year. That stay was a struggle. By this time we had decided to move mum and dad to be closer to my sister and myself which was agreed all round.

When we took her back to larkfield unit they looked at us as if we were aliens and said we dont have a bed for her. I was blunt with them and said well you better find one as we cant do this without help. They said to leave her that day and to come back the next day and take her home as she wasn't in their district any more. We were told they'd contact our local health service and put a care package in to support us - we are still waiting on that happening.

We have been in contact with social work here and were told they couldnt help unless mum wanted help. She doesnt want anything but there is no improvement in my mum after 18months.

larkfield were full of promises but disappointed us every time. I am on an antidepressent now and my sister and I cry all the time. My poor wee dad does know if he is coming or going. We are at a loss as how to progress all due to the off hand way we were all treated, especially my poor wee mum who sits in her chair or lies in her bed day after day.

Thanks for reading this.

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Response from Paul Cannon, Head of Administration, Acute Services Division, Greater Glasgow & Clyde NHS

Thank you for taking the time and trouble to provide your feedback.

I am sorry that this posting was not acknowledged at the time, we had a break in our use of Patient Opinion, but we have now resumed doing so, and I thought it was still important to acknowledge your posting.

You raised a number of issues that are of concern and we would like to follow these up if we are can. In order to do so, can you please provide further details and send these to complaints@ggc.scot.nhs.uk and we will address these for you.


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