cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

A Duty of Care

Minivanman
Hero
Posts: 4,794
Thanks: 1,046
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-11-2014

A Duty of Care

Personally, I don't think so.

My children owe me nothing other than to look after their own offspring without worrying about me, and I see this as nothing less than the government trying even harder to ditch their responsibility for us wrinklies and dump it onto our kids.

Shame on them, and shame on this Minister.

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/jan/31/take-care-of-your-elderly-mothers-and-fathers-says-t...

 

 

All views expressed are my own but you can express them too if you want to be right about everything like I am.
18 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,596
Thanks: 751
Fixes: 3
Registered: 06-11-2014

Re: A Duty of Care

It's just an excuse to close down more care homes, even though there are people working long hours jobs to scrape a living and have no time or energy to look after the elderly, hence why there are nurses and doctors trained in the care of the elderly...

 

And besides, with the conservative "perfect world" of husband & wife with two kids in a brand new home with a huge mortgage and them working every hour they can, there's no time left, so, one ideal doesn't gel with the other...

Community Veteran
Posts: 7,912
Thanks: 594
Fixes: 8
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: A Duty of Care

Fully agree with your comments @twocvbloke @Minivanman.

If children want to look after parents that's fine but to try and make people feel guilty if they do not is just wrong.

Governments have been aware of the lack of care and facilities for the elderly for many years but have failed to take any sort of meaningful action, bit like a number of other areas so the idea is to try and put the responsibility on to us.

What next ? Scrap the ambulance service and call a taxi instead, close GP surgeries and do everything over the internet,

Daft ? of course it is but some fool will no doubt suggest it or something even dafter !

Community Veteran
Posts: 5,338
Thanks: 608
Registered: 23-09-2010

Re: A Duty of Care

Duty of care, funny old phrase that, duty of care.

I mean the police don't have a duty of care. They've said so enough times and proved it enough times. The obvious examples being standing by quoting health and safety while someone drowns.

But ordinary people apparently do have a duty of care. As a recent case shows where someone drowned and a person was charged and found guilty of standing by and doing nothing.

That said yes I do think children should look after their parents if they need help. But that's an ideal world.

Some parents hate their kids and some kids loathe their parents. That will never change.

Minivanman
Hero
Posts: 4,794
Thanks: 1,046
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-11-2014

Re: A Duty of Care

How about replacing the term with 'obligation of care', what then @billnotben - do you think children should be obliged to look after parents in need? I certainly don't.

As for kids not liking parents and vise versa, ain't that the truth..... but not in my case I hasten to add Smiley

All views expressed are my own but you can express them too if you want to be right about everything like I am.
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,338
Thanks: 608
Registered: 23-09-2010

Re: A Duty of Care

Lets just say that putting aside love and hate that I think it's normal that children would want to look after their parents.

But in any way forced to, no.

Community Veteran
Posts: 7,912
Thanks: 594
Fixes: 8
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: A Duty of Care

I wonder if at some point in the future children may be made to make a financial contribution to the care of their parents if they are unwilling or unable to look after them at home.

I simply cannot see where the money will come from in the future for this and many other essential services.

Minivanman
Hero
Posts: 4,794
Thanks: 1,046
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-11-2014

Re: A Duty of Care

You might not be far off the mark there @gleneagles

In France for example there are reciprocal enforcement of financial orders in place between parents and children which means that a child has the legal obligation to look after a parent and get this, it applies whether or not the children are in living in the country. The parents may decline to take advantage of such an order but you can bet your bottom dollar that the authorities will chase the kids for any expenditure the state has to make on their behalf. 

Coming soon to a country near you Roll eyes

All views expressed are my own but you can express them too if you want to be right about everything like I am.
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,596
Thanks: 751
Fixes: 3
Registered: 06-11-2014

Re: A Duty of Care

Having thought about it, the word "Duty", it's used for other things, got a pet with an incurable illness such as cancer or dementia? Take it to the vets to "do the duty" and have it put to sleep...

 

But, have a relative with the same incurables, and that "duty" is illegal, funny that, we're allowed to kill animals we consider to be family, but we can't do the same with humans we consider to be family...

MKSlinky
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 845
Thanks: 227
Fixes: 3
Registered: 26-01-2016

Re: A Duty of Care

Having lost my own dad to dementia just 3 years ago I fully understand the comments here. I'd like to say so much on this subject but I still find this difficult. 

What started out as a relatively minor health problem (dehydration) my dad went form being reasonably well at home, if you can call it that, to being critically ill in hospital with one urine infection after the other caused by unsanitary practices at my local hospital in Milton Keynes. What made the whole sorry tale so distressing for me and my family was that all of those infections my dad endured were completely preventable. He had a catheter going into his bladder through his abdomen (Supra-pubic Catheter). The entry point was meant to be cleaned and dressed daily, this never happened once and we always had to ask for this to be done. Most nurses seemingly weren't even aware he had one!

The term 'duty of care' seems like such a meaningless phrase, duty of care to whom I wonder? It's one thing to be diagnosed with dehydration but to then die of preventable infections is another.

My poor dad was hospitalised for the remaining six months of his life although just before the end the hospital said we must find him a care home. He wasn't well enough to leave hospital but they were very insistent saying that "we have treated his health problems and now he just needs looking after for daily care". What rubbish, just 14 days after leaving hospital he was back in again in a much worse state.

Did the care home provide a good service for the £1000 weekly cost, did they f***!!! On one occasion when I went to be beside him a nurse had just given him his heart medication, this medication is meant to be swallowed but there was my dad laying there, mouth wide open with two heart pills stuck to his tongue! Duty of care really sucks!

Cutting a long story short, when my dad was readmitted to hospital that was probably the last time he communicated with us, for the final 3-4 weeks he lay asleep unable to eat, drink or swallow due to the dementia and so the hospital decided to let him starve. No attempts were made to tube feed him, I can't imagine what he went through during those final weeks. I can tell you this though, looking after someone you love so dearly is both mentally and emotionally draining and yes in some small way you do feel a sense of relief when it's all over. None of us could have coped with his suffering indefinitely.

Should children look after their parents when only a hospital can provide the right care, no!

The question is where does anyone go for the right care? Hospitals hate the elderly. They often refer to them as bed blockers but if you need help where else do you go for it. Care homes are too expensive for the average person, and council funded care homes are the worst depressing places anyone could wish for. 

There's certainly a lot to be said for assisted dying, I'm all for it if it prevents the kind of suffering my dad went through. I do know he had a 'DNR' on his medical notes so I'm sure he would have liked an assisted death had the choice been available.

My mum took that dreaded call at 5.20 am on what turned out to be a lovely sunny morning. The hospital told us to get there quickly. It actually only took me around 10 minutes but my poor dad was dead on arrival. Judging by the look of him he had been dead for much longer than 10 minutes though.

At least with assisted death you can be there with your loved one until the end.

Oh and BTW, in case you wondered what the Coroner put on his death certificate..., 'Dementia', no mention whatsoever of infection or death by starvation.

So much for a 'Duty of care' there then!

Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 16,548
Thanks: 1,796
Fixes: 125
Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: A Duty of Care

@MKSlinky

Your experience with your dad mirrors mine in so many ways and I really feel for you. Six years after my dad passed away I still question whether I did the right things for him.

 

My wife and I moved into my parents' to help my mum who was loosing her ability to get round the house but soon after we moved in my dad became ill. He was unable to get out of bed yet tests showed nothing obvious was wrong. He was always a strong man and worked till he was 82 and even came on holiday with my wife, mum and myself to Kyiv when he was 86!

 

It became more apparent that we could not offer the assistance my dad needed at home with psysiotherapy and my mum was unable to make various decisions so looked to me to make them. I found him a place in a local hospital that was close enough for anyone to push my mother there in her wheelchair. The care seemed good but my dad was a stubborn man and wouldn't always wait for help so one day fell trying to get out of bed and broke his hip... he was 90. Couldn't really blame the staff but did question why they made him wait so long.

 

He was admitted to a hospital much further away where they pinned his hip together. After several weeks we received a letter telling us he needef to be discharged into a care home and if we didn't find somewhere within 14 days they would find somewhere on his behalf which could be more then 50 miles away! If anyone knows the Herne Bay area where my mum lives they would know that good care homes are few a far apart with long waiting lists. I complained to the hospital several times and they did extend the deadline a couple of times but the pressure was on. We eventually found a home which was the best of a bad bunch but close enough to get my mum there in about 20 minutes by car. Like your dad,mine was also prone to urine infections.

 

He died two weeks later without his family around him which, even now, is hard to deal with. I will never forget the call at 7am and having to tell my mum minutes later. He died just 6 weeks before their 60th wedding anniversay.

 

 

I actually think that after living a full and reasonably enjoyable life he just gave up but will never know if that was due to his age and disabilities or if he felt abandonded by his family. He never let on if the latter but the thought that it could be will remain with me for a very long time.

 

The treatment at the second hospital was dispicable and we felt no sense of care for my dad or his family at all.

 

Getting old is now a frightening concept.

Forum Moderator and Customer
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear - Mark Twain
He who feared he would not succeed sat still

Community Veteran
Posts: 5,321
Thanks: 467
Fixes: 1
Registered: 21-03-2011

Re: A Duty of Care

There used to be a reasonable supply of Council run care homes until the collective wisdom decided it was cheaper to close the home, pocket the money from the property sale, and push the people out into private care homes. Closing the public homes reduces the commitment on pension payments for the low cost local authority employees. However as the local authorities and central government become more reliant on private care homes they become exposed to price increases as these places are run to make a profit. With the old scheme of public care they were run to cover costs and not to make a profit.

Meanwhile the lack of care homes leads to bed blocking in hospitals and the knock on delays in A&E Departments.

Many "children" do look after their old folk, but there are always cases where it isn't possible. The public safety net should be there for those cases, even if it is inconvenient for Government Ministers.

Now Zen, but a +Net residue.
Minivanman
Hero
Posts: 4,794
Thanks: 1,046
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-11-2014

Re: A Duty of Care

@MKSlinky @Mav

What a pair of utterly sad stories, and without going into mine how common these seem to be.

Assisted dying? Bring it on.

PS. I'd be more than happy to buy whatever is needed on line for when my time to decide arrives but having looked, I cannot be sure it's even going to work given it's common origin or even about the price that is being charged. Guess I'll have to stick with DNR for now.  

All views expressed are my own but you can express them too if you want to be right about everything like I am.
Minivanman
Hero
Posts: 4,794
Thanks: 1,046
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-11-2014

Re: A Duty of Care

Well you know what they say about that safety net @AlaricAdair, the holes just keep getting bigger. 

 

2560.jpg

All views expressed are my own but you can express them too if you want to be right about everything like I am.
MKSlinky
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 845
Thanks: 227
Fixes: 3
Registered: 26-01-2016

Re: A Duty of Care


Mav wrote:

@MKSlinky

Your experience with your dad mirrors mine in so many ways and I really feel for you. Six years after my dad passed away I still question whether I did the right things for him.

 

 

I think we all bear that burden after we lose a loved one. I thought the experience we went through would have made me a stronger and more determined person but that didn't happen. I still find emotions running high and easily cave under any pressure.

I wanted the NHS to admit to their failings when my dad died and in the weeks before his death we did have several meetings with hospital staff and managers in an effort to provide better care but nothing changed. Sadly they listened to our complaints but failed to act on any of them.

My sister is the strongest one in our family and she's more able to keep her cool when dealing with these kinds of issues. She contacted PALS and various other people and even after his death we never got any replies, not even a sorry. 

Getting old is now a frightening concept.

Yes don't I know it, my mum has also been suffering a lot since my dad died. She also fell and broke her hip and spent many weeks in hospital. I found it tiring visiting my dad every day but then to start having to do it for my mum as well made things even worse. I mentioned in one of the other topics that I had suffered cancer twice recently, I was going through that while my dad was dying but I didn't complain.

It seems as though when someone is ill or dying we surround ourselves in misery and then we start worrying about our own mortality, I know I do. 

@Minivanman

Yes assisted dying does sound like a nice way to go if things are that bad but having someone to assist you and be there for you until the end is something I can only wish for being single. At 52 I'm not feeling very hopeful of ever finding a partner and especially when the odds are stacked against me. I just hope the government makes the right changes before I get to that stage, I wouldn't want to go into a care home that's for sure.