Wednesday, 29 October 2014

more short stories from the critical viewpoint about OT and Stratheden Hospital

In February 2012 when my son was an inpatient of the Stratheden Hospital IPCU he wasn't allowed a pen to write with unless accompanied by two nurses in the "activity room".  It seemed the OTs had abandoned the patients and left it up to the nurses to gainfully occupy the patients as well as treat them with drugs.

staff only toilet Ceres Centre Stratheden 2012
I had met with the head of OT in 2010, who is based near the Staff only toilet in the Ceres Centre at Stratheden, a long meeting that went nowhere.  She said how she'd taken her staff out of the wards at Stratheden because she was not managing to retain staff.  That was her story at the time.  All about the staff.  My concerns were more to do with the patients.

Staff centred care.  A common feature at Stratheden in my experience over the years.  Because the staff have been left to get on with stuff in a Cinderella service.  Lack of resources, bottom of the pile.  The patients and carers having to suffer for it. 

It is just not good enough.  Basic human rights denied.  No freedom of expression.  No toilet or water to drink.  

I remember attending one clinical meeting in the IPCU Feb12 and saying to the OT who was there that he should get rubbery or squidgy pens that weren't "dangerous weapons" because that was the excuse given for not allowing patients to have writing utensils.  Similarly with the plastic cutlery and no plastic bottles of water (also allegedly dangerous weapons).  

I suggested blackboards on the walls and chalk, or white boards with plastic pens.  No-one listened or appeared to listen to what I had to say.  Just like the head of OT in 2010.  Brick wall comes to mind.  And the patients, and carers, having to suffer for it.

I had a meeting in early 2011 with the then General Manager of mental health who has now taken early retirement and I wish him well.  His line manager was also there, a woman.  I complained about the head of OT not listening to the words of a carer.  I recommended that he should send her on a 6 month sabbatical, get someone else in to do a better job of it, someone who was patient centred.  I was told that this wasn't financially viable.  Unfortunately.

(however I think she did go off under her own steam a wee while back, and came back)

I really didn't appreciate being patronised by the head of OT who is/was based at Stratheden Hospital.  It's not good enough to take her staff out of the wards and expect the nurses to do occupational therapy as well as everything else.  A recipe for disaster. 

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