Trained as a social worker. Worked at the BBC as a producer and journalist. Started Safe and Sound Trining in 2000.
When my mother was in a North London Hospital I realised after a number of mishaps that the only way she was going to be properly cared for was if I was there 24/7. No mean feat so while I was at work I paid for somebody to sit by her bed so if she wanted water it could be given, if she wanted to go to the toilet she wouldnt have soil the bed, and when food arrived it could be given to her before it was stone cold. At one point my mother had a fall when neither the carer or I was there. I was appalled and complained. When I said I was going to stay all night by her bedside the hospital assured me they would have somebody sit with her during the night. When I arrived in the morning the nurse said "your mother has had a fnatastic night - she hasn't stirred all night" of course not she was in a coma!!! She died 3 weeks later
Clearly you have touched a nerve. I have spent more time that I would have wanted in hospital with dieing relativesboth my mother who died from a stroke, her sister who died from cancer and my brother who died from cancer. The experience in the main, was not good. Yes there were some very caring nurses but also a lot that were rushed and did not have the time to talk, to feed, to take to the toilet, to give water when required. The agency nurses were especially uncaring. Some people are natural carers and others are not and the latter should not be employed as nurses. I dont think you need a degree to be a good nurse. If you have the right aptitude and a good standard of education then you can learn on the job. No degree is going to make you a good carer.
This approach is not new. I was trained by the Alzheimers Society some time ago exactly in this approach. They have been providing this excellent training for many years. I use this approach when I run dementia awareness training for relatives and carers. Just more people to know or want to know about this. It needs time and patience and unfortunately we don't have a lot of this in our society! Roma Felstein Safe and Sound
I do agree also with the last comment about too many nurse managers - but there job should be about caring, sitting by the bed, talking to patients, helping to feed them etc. The problem is that we are too hot on academic achievements rather than the pracitcal side of nursing. A nursing degree is useless if the they do not have a caring personality.
Having spent 2 months at the Whittingdon Hospital in North London about 7 years ago with my mother I watched carefully how the 'contract' cleaners didn't clean. they would stand around aimlessly flopping a mop around. for one week I saw the same piece of dried blood in the corner of the lift until I took the pictures to the head of cleaning!! the next day it disappeared. So who is checking? and if they are not doing their jobs properly then get rid of them. Nurses cannot be expected to clean as well as care. Doctors need to do the medical stuff, nurses the caring and cleaners the cleaning. Finally with regard to commodes. I put my mohter on a comode in the same hospital only to find that there was a lump of somebody else's 'stuff' on the seat. The doctor was there at the time and my mother had a bowel infection I pointed this out to the doctor, who was completely disinterested saying "this is the nurses responsibility" not mine......I would love someone to give me a hopsital for a few months and a budget and that hospital would be spanking clean!!!