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Thread: A friend in trouble, UK - what to do?

  1. #1

    A friend in trouble, UK - what to do?

    First off, I am not authorised by him to ask for help, advice whatever. What I can (and did, at the risk of him being angry or worse) is contact some friends we have in common, who live in the UK and alert them on the situation so they can possibly hang around more often than they actually would otherwise. And as I am becoming vaguer than feasible, the only thing I wrote, trying to be helpful without disclosing too personal stuff is this:
    I have just talked with xxx on skype, and he might be having trouble. If you can spare an hour or two, you might be able to help but he probably won't ask you, so I decided to butt in. I am not sure (actually, I am sure quite the opposite is the case) he will appreciate me contacting you about this. In a nutshell - *carer's name* is having some problems with him, and she is neglecting him; and in his situation it might be quite dangerous. So what I am suggesting - if you have an hour to spare, now and then, could you possibly just visit and see if he needs help?

    The facts, as far as I know - there are some issues, partly emotional, partly practical (visa etc), partly things I do not know, are none of my business and are largely irrelevant, but what is relevant - and I think dangerous - is that the carer's discomfort translates to literally boycotting the friend's needs (eating, toilet, daily routine), and he can't really do anything about it because he is c4/c5, even if very incomplete. He won't report it as abuse, and actually - luckily - sees the funny side of it but it turns out this has been happening for quite some time, and escalating wildly, especially as he tried to sack his carer and she refuses to leave. Apart from alerting/contacting friends in common, and I am not sure he will appreciate that - what other options does he have? How can friends help more effectively?
    Sorry if this is the wrong section of the board - thought Relationships might be a better choice, but having read that section too, it seems that Caregiving comes closest.
    Thanks, folks. Any advice appreciated.

  2. #2
    Moderator jody's Avatar
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    your friend will die with care like that. it is certain. you can make a call to the local welfare office, They will investigate. Does he pay her, or an agency? if an agency, report her to them. you can tell him about us, and maybe we can talk some sense into him. is it her issue mental issue or his? yes get your friends together on this. maybe if he knows he has backup, he wont be afraid to do something about it. is he afraid of having no care? if you are sure there is abuse and neglect, please call police, or welfare and tell them you suspect neglect and abuse. the will pay a concerned citizen visit. you do not have to give them your name. Thank you for looking after your friend by the way. I promise, by helping him you are saving his life. a quad just cant have toilet needs neglected. just cannot. and if he has a pressure sore he could be in dire straits health wise. I dont know about the economy there, but here it is easy to replace a caregiver because of high unemployment.

  3. #3
    Makes me think of the film Misery. She refuses to leave?! Scary!


  4. #4
    I don't know your system in the UK, but I will take a stab at it.

    Is the caregiver paid by the NHS or other government funded program? If so, there must be a number you could call to alert them to this situation.

    Is this something that a district nurse would get involved in? If so, call the appropriate person and ask them to have the DN follow up.

    In the USA, we have a county agency called something like Adult Protective Services (also one called Child Protective Services). Anyone can report suspected abuse or neglect to them. In my state, PWD are in a special protected class (along with the elderly) considered more vulnerable, and having a higher priority for this agency to investigate any allegations of abuse/neglect. They will even take anonymous calls, but health care professionals, teachers, and several other groups are mandated by law to report their suspicions of abuse/neglect within 24 hours to these agencies. It is very serious and enforced. Although we do notify the person being abused that we are reporting, it is not required, and we do not need their consent to do so.

    If you can't find out who to call, contact your closest hospital or rehabilitation center, and ask to speak to a social worker. Tell them the problem and ask for their help in getting in touch with the proper agency.

    (KLD)

  5. #5
    Thanks for your ideas and support, guys!
    Jody, the carer is hired personally by him, she has been taking care of him for 5 years now, ever since his accident. I have only met her briefly, for 3 days, she looked OK. I don't think she ever had any proper training, and most probably doesn't even realise that dropping him in a recliner in the morning and helping him to bed at night is not all that care is about. I am bitching about exercising etc but even like that, this new spin - verbal abuse and threats and, practically, demonstrative neglect is not only unprofessional, it is inhuman and threatening. My own dad is in a wheelchair for different reasons (stroke) but if somebody treated him like that, I would strangle them first, and then sue them to bits and out of any career aspirations in the care sphere they might have. My friend doesn't have mental or emotional issues; the carer has. We all snap when it gets tough (and even so that's no excuse) but from what he told me, it is not an isolated incident!
    Le Type Fran├žais, yep, it does bring to mind Misery. Also makes me realise that someone's fantasy (artistic) is another person's living hell.
    SCI-Nurse, to be honest, I am not very well familiar with the UK system; they do have POVA. This woman, though, is not affiliated to any professional body, agency, whatever. She is employed legally, of course, but technically speaking is not threatened to lose any license as she doesn't have one in the first place. Any complaints will show on her CRB, too.I sent the link to this discussion to a UK friend who lives closest. I am currently in Bulgaria and making arrangements for long-term rehab for my friend here, and can't do anything, apart from phoning really.

  6. #6
    the system in britain stinks and it sadley lacks the whole commiunication line is definatley not here first yr friend needs support so try PALS its in every hospital so its easy to contact PALS is a liason team they can get help such as social care involved and not just for yr friend but also his carer (maybe she/he is finding it really difficult to cope with) it was an enormous help to me, if it is abuse and I am not saying it is then yr friend needs outside help does he have email? http://www.pals.nhs.uk/ the website is here also try http://www.carersinformation.org.uk/ they are a wealth of info and will put yr friend in contact with his local carer service who can visit, failing which if he is being neglected contact the police iether through phone or website http://www.met.police.uk/ I hope this helps yr friend

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