Random Round-up

As I’m still creaking back to normal, I have come across a number of articles that made me consider and ponder which I thought I’d share. It is a little hotch-potch of different things about a variety of subjects but that’s just the way my brain is working (or not!) at the moment.

There’s an interesting piece in the Los Angeles Times written by a doctor who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. It’s a short piece with perceptive insights worth a look.

Martin Narey, the chief executive of Barnardo’s has again been saying that he believes more children should be taken into care earlier. I haven’t explored the details of his views in any great detail but it is always interesting to challenge confidently held orthodoxies once in a while.

I certainly think that providing additional support to 18 and on to 24 should be a minimum expectation for children in care .I also wonder at where the additional foster care placements are going to be coming from although it reads that Narey has more ideas about extending childrens’ homes.

The Guardian has a panel article written about perspectives in caring. It is worth reading through. It consists of six personal accounts and suggestions as to how things might be improved for carers.

It’s a well put-together piece and the conclusions are unsurprising namely that carers should be valued more in our society both financially and in relation to moral authority regarding their knowledge of the needs of the cared-for person.

I was surprised/horrified by this report from a home carer quoted in the piece

Take this example: two ladies in my care are living together. Mother and daughter both have very different needs. The mother struggles to walk as her knee joint replacement has become septic and needs removing. The daughter has learning difficulties, asthma and is morbidly obese. Easily fixed? Sadly, no. The mother also suffers with severe dementia and refuses to have any personal care or treatment. She is legally responsible for her daughter, and also prevents her from having treatment.

Social services do not have the power to make both women wards of court. We, as carers do not have the authority to even call a GP to them, unless it is an emergency. My fear is that these ladies, who are already being terribly neglected, will come to serious harm, an occurrence which will force an enquiry. Why can’t this be stopped now? Because carers are gagged. We are advised by our agency to “cover our backs” and make notes of our tasks and concerns at each visit, which we do, diligently. These records are collected once every few months and immediately archived.

For me, capacity decisions cried out from this vignette. Do the women have capacity to make these decisions? In which case, no decisions can be made on their behalf as they are capacitious but if there is a question of the lack of capacity over the issues of health management or care, then this is exactly the situation that the Mental Capacity Act should be able to clarify through the use of the Court of Protection if necessary. The carers DO have the authority to call a GP if there is a lack of capacity or understanding of the need for medical attention. I truly hope that the legal position of these women is clarified and that the carer writing realises that she does indeed have the responsibility to call a GP if she feels a GP is needed and capacity is lacking.

I hope her agency are well aware of their own legal responsibilities.

Finally, an Irish MEP, Nessa Childers claims that Facebook is a public threat to the mental health of a generation. She states that

the social networking site is an addiction that caused people to “crossed the line from social networking to social dysfunction.

It’s easy to ridicule this kind of position due to a lack of understanding or intransigence about attitudes towards ‘new’ ways of connecting or networking. Personally, I see ‘facebook’ and ‘social networking’ as a tool to use rather than a use in itself and like everything, it is how we choose to use the tools rather than the tools in themselves.

Hopefully, I’ll be able to build up a bit more consistency in the posting as I still work towards recovery! Otherwise, it’s just a bit of pot luck in the meantime!

2 thoughts on “Random Round-up

  1. The Guardian is nothing but state operated, comment censoring propaganda pushers. Why would you link to them?

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