Archive for December, 2012

Thief tears diamond rings from widow’s fingers as she lay dying in hospital bed.

The crook is believed to have crept up to the 70-year-old’s bed as she lay there unconscious to steal the rings.

Violated: Bridget Coughlan died without realising the rings had gone.

Police are hunting a thief who ripped two diamond rings off a pensioner’s fingers as she lay dying in hospital.

The crook is believed to have crept up to 70-year-old Bridget Coughlan’s bed as she lay there unconscious.



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Arbour Court care home ordered to make urgent improvements by health watchdog

Inspectors from the Care Quality Commission made an unannounced visit to Arbour Court Care Home in Marple, which cares for up to 60 people, and found problems with record keeping.

The watchdog issued a formal warning to Barchester Healthcare Limited, registered provider of Arbour Court, after the visit – and said it must improve by this Sunday or face a possible fine or court action.

Inspectors raised a number of concerns, including their observation that a ‘frail and vulnerable’ resident had their needs overlooked and neglected during the morning of their visit.

Records showed that they had not been checked by care or nursing staff for four hours and inspectors ruled that staff had failed to appropriately plan for this person’s care.

The report said: “We raised our concerns with the nursing staff who told us that this person had been discharged from hospital the day before and care staff had probably got used to them not being there, so had omitted to check that their needs were being met.”

Inspectors also noted that another resident’s care plan specified they needed to drink one and a half to two litres of fluid per day – but records indicated this was not always met.

Click here to read more http://menmedia.co.uk/manchestereveningnews/news/s/1596958_arbour-court-care-home-ordered-to-make-urgent-improvements-by-health-watchdog


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Abuse alert system for hospitals

An online system to identify children who may be in danger of abuse or neglect is being developed for use in hospitals across England.

The £9m Child Protection Information System will alert doctors and nurses in accident and emergency departments if children are known to be at risk or had urgent treatment at other hospitals.

It will be rolled out from 2015.


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Middle class care bill fiasco: PM backed £35,000 cap on fees… now elderly couples face paying as much as £150,000

  • Couples could face £150,000 care bill under new plans
  • Cameron initially backed £35,000 contribution cap, now it could be      £75,000
  • Older people face selling their homes to cover costs

Middle-class couples who need residential care in old age could be hit with bills as high as £150,000.

Under Coalition plans to be unveiled in the New Year, the upper limit on the amount that must be contributed towards care could be £60,000 or even £75,000 per person.

This ‘cap’ is much higher than the £35,000 suggested by last year’s independent review into England’s care funding system.

If both husband and wife end up moving into residential care, it could mean they will have to pay out up to £150,000 before the state steps in.

To read more click on this link http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2253199/Middle-class-care-fiasco-PM-backed-35-000-cap-fees–elderly-face-paying-double.html

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James Paget University Hospital approved by watchdog

A hospital serving Norfolk and North Suffolk has been given a clean bill of health but told to cut waiting times.

Independent watchdog Monitor has ruled James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust at Gorleston now meets its terms of authorisation.

To read more click here http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-norfolk-20814559

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‘They Can’t Take That Away from Me: Musical Memories That Colour Our Lives’  by Jackie McGregor. £3.28p on Kindle. Jackie Mcgregor~book cover

You don’t even need to leave the house, just click on this link and order it!


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The Home Office says the reforms will “put the public in the driving seat”

Victims of anti-social behaviour will be able to choose the punishment for offenders under government plans.

They will be given the right to choose from a list of out-of-court penalties handed down to tackle low-level crime.

The draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill will also allow people to demand meetings with the police if their complaints are not dealt with properly.

Commons Leader Andrew Lansley said the plans, which are being consulted on, would “put victims first”.

He told MPs: “Measures include a new community trigger which will empower victims and communities to demand that local agencies deal with persistent problems where they have failed to do so.

“It will also speed up the eviction of anti-social tenants by introducing a faster route for the most serious criminal or anti-social behaviour.”

Possible punishments

  • Paying compensation to the victim
  • Signing a contract agreeing to “acceptable-behaviour”
  • Participating in alcohol or drug treatment programmes
  • Repairing damage caused
  • Community service, such as 10 hours of local  unpaid work

The reforms are designed to replace Labour’s so-called Asbos which critics say have become a badge of honour for some offenders.

The “community trigger” is designed to prevent victims like Fiona Pilkington suffering sustained abuse while the authorities fail to crackdown on the culprits.

Ms Pilkington killed herself and her disabled daughter in 2007 after suffering a decade of abuse from local gangs.

‘Made to pay’

Mr Lansley said the Home Affairs select committee would scrutinise the draft legislation before making its recommendations in February next year.

The Home Office is asking members of the public and frontline professionals to give their views on the community remedy before the laws become finalised.

Javed Khan, chief executive of Victim Support, said victims wanted a greater say in how nuisance behaviour and offenders are dealt with.

“Victims can benefit enormously from knowing the offender is being made to pay for what they’ve done,” he said.

He welcomed the community remedy measure which “goes one step further by offering a range of options for the victim to choose from”.

A recent survey suggested that more than a third of adults – 36% – would be interested in attending free classes with police officers and volunteers to learn about combating anti-social behaviour and how to avoid danger when walking home alone.


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Occupational therapy student Rosemary Leaver explains a bit about the role.

Occupational therapy is a young, growing profession, and there are a lot of misconceptions about it, says Rosemary Leaver.

With dramatic changes underway, it’s not an easy time to be an occupational therapy student.

There’s a lot of uncertainty, particularly regarding what will be funded when payment by results is fully implemented next year. Occupational therapists, particularly those who tend to avoid the limelight, will need more than ever to be able to sell their services. But by working together to increase interdisciplinary understanding, occupational therapists can meet these challenges head-on, and ensure high standards for the future of health and social care.

As an occupational therapy student, I feel that defining our profession and highlighting exactly what we do is important. Occupational therapy is a young, growing profession, and there are a lot of misconceptions about it. Some professionals have obvious roles; the doctor who performs life saving surgery, the nurse who provides indispensable after care. But many members of the multidisciplinary team stay in the background, working to improve the wellbeing of all members of society.

Definitions can be tricky, because like social workers, we work with a whole cross-section of society, in a myriad of different environments. So while we might help one person access paid work, we might help another manage anxiety through creative activity. Importantly, we don’t set the occupational goals; our clients do.

We also tend not to shout about what we do. You shouldn’t go into occupational therapy if you want to be recognised as the hero. The most skilled workers in these professions consider themselves facilitators, working solely to enable other people to achieve.

If someone finishes a therapeutic activity and thinks “hey, the therapist didn’t even do anything. I just did it all myself!”, then that person has had a very successful course of occupational therapy.

I know that social workers hold a similar philosophy, in that the more independence they can elicit from their clients, the more successful their intervention has been. Social workers don’t want to be needed; they want to give people the skills and confidences that will enable them to manage their own affairs. So do we.

A common misconception about occupational therapists is that the contribution towards the recovery of a patient is not as important as that of medics, or psychological therapists. On the surface, a lot of occupational therapist interventions can appear simple.

The misunderstanding is that everyday activities are simple and easy to do. While this may be true most of the time, someone struggling with either their mental or physical health may have a very different experience of trying to bathe, cook or access public transport independently. Occupational therapists put great value on learning how to break down these activities, and make them accessible for everyone.

Like social work students, occupational therapists spend a lot of time on placements, gaining a taste for the challenges and rewards which await.

In my view, the more that different professionals learn about each other’s roles, the better we can work as a team, and the better we can work for our clients.


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The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has appointed David Prior as chair three months after Dame Jo Williams resigned from the position.

Prior, who is currently chair of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, joins at a time of great scrutiny for the independent regulator of health and social care services, with Dame Jo’s resignation coming shortly after a controversial attempt to remove board member Kay Sheldon from her position after Sheldon had criticised the body’s leadership.

Dame Jo’s resignation in September was the second major change at the top this year for the CQC, with chief executive Cynthia Bower resigning in February following a troubled four years in charge. She was replaced by David Behan in June, 2012.

Commenting on Prior’s appointment as chair, Behan said his rich experience in the NHS would benefit the CQC going forward.

“The next phase of the CQC’s development is vital to delivering success in protecting and promoting the health, safety and welfare of people who use health and care services.

“Guided by the findings from our Strategic Review, David Prior will play a pivotal role in chairing the board and working with stakeholders.”

Prior, who also has experience with Lehman Brothers, British Steel and as a Conservative MP, gave his vision of the CQC’s future.

“CQC must be an intelligent, risk-driven, consistent and transparent regulator of care standards. It will be driven by common sense and judgement not box-ticking and form-filling.

“It will be concerned both with the quality of hands-on clinical practice and with the culture, governance, openness and sustainability of the organisations that provide care.”

He also acknowledged specific incidents at Stafford Hospital, which reported higher-than-expected mortality rates, and Winterbourne View, which was the subject of a television exposé for its care failings.

“The organisations that CQC regulate must demonstrate that the systemic failure of care that occurred at Stafford Hospital and Winterbourne View does not, will not and could not happen here.

“The ultimate test for all those involved directly or indirectly in delivering care is: ‘Would I be happy for myself or my loved ones to be cared for here?’


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I am writing a new series of workbooks for staff supporting people with learning disabilities; older people and people with dementia etc.  I am aware that the general public also need some information, such as, how to communicate with a relative who cannot communicate verbally, or if you have a relative receiving care in a care/nursing home, at home or in hospital and you want to raise your concerns and do not know how to, or who to etc. [Don’t forget to firstly tell them what they do well before telling them about your concerns].

If you are a member of the public I would appreciate your views on my current Work in Progress and you can do this by clicking on this link. https://suzancollins.wordpress.com/other-works-in-progress-0wip/

Thank you in advance for your comments. Suzan

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