"My mum's care in the Larkfield unit"

About: Larkfield Unit

(as a relative),

My mum who has dementia was admitted to the Larkfield unit from Inverclyde Royal with bowel problems.

She was admitted to ward 2 for a short period where at first I thought the care was ok but then I noticed very bad bruising on her arm and shoulder. When I enquired about this I was told it was when they were trying to take blood. Then I was told that my mother was challenging so she was moved to ward 3 and things just got worse.

The nursing staff I meet seemed to have no compassion for any of the elderly patients. They were left without drinks. One lady across from my mum was asking me if she could have a drink of water as she was very dry, but there was no water jug or glass, so I went over to her bed and they had put her buzzer under her mattress so I gave it to the lady and she buzzed and asked for a drink, but was told that the tea trolley was on its way.

She buzzed on 3 separate occasions and still was not given water, but had to wait until the tea came. I mean this was a basic need that this lady wanted met. I was shocked.

Also another lady with dementia was exposing her breasts whilst visitors were in, and I went and informed the nurses who were all just standing about talking and did not rush to assist the lady.

Getting back to my own mum, I felt her treatment was shocking. She was continually bruised. Again they said she was violent/challenging. She was also left soiled. They told me each time that it was when she was having bloods taken. Eventually I reported this to mum’s social worker who went the ward to read her notes and mums bruising stopped.

They said that they are not trained in dealing with dementia patients, but I strongly would recommend that whatever ward you are working within the Larkfield unit all the staff should be trained in dementia.

They then moved mum into ward 4 where all the staff were supposed to be well trained in dementia. Some of the staff in this ward were caring, but in the end I complained about a staff nurse who made a terrible comment about my mum, who by this time was not taking meds. She also never had a shower since she entered this ward.

I would hate for my mum ever to have to go back to this hospital again. She and all the other patients deserve, no matter if they have dementia or not, to be treated with respect and dignity and to have their needs met at all times.

My mother is now doing wonderfully in a nursing home eating, singing, dancing and is having a shower every morning. Within the first week of going in, no challenging behaviour at all, she is now having the life and treatment that she deserves.

I believe staff at the Larkfield unit need training in how to respect the elderly and how to care for them properly.

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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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