Archive for the ‘NHS’ Category

Motor Neurone disease – End of Life, One familys’ story (Update)

26 March 2013

This is an update from Helen Findlay, who first shared her familys’ story with us in 2009

Helen Findlay

THE FINDLAY REPORT    was first published informally in 2006.

It was written by me and other family members and relates the experience that my 85-year-old father, James went through in trying to get appropriate care after he was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease.

It contains a day-by-day account covering four months detailing what was happening to him and the activities of health and social care services around him in the community, in a care home and in hospital where he eventually died. It also contains recommendations from us about how his experience of care could have been so much improved and enabled him to have had a ‘good’ end of life experience.

From the diagnosis of MND until my father’s death was just seven weeks. In those seven weeks we all lived a lifetime. They were weeks coloured by stress, problems, despair, feelings of helplessness, intense sadness and tears all because of the way that my father was treated, as well as what the disease was doing to him, the way my mother, Joan, who had dementia was treated and the way we, his children and other family members were treated. But it was a time that was also coloured by mounting anger. And it is the anger that is still driving my family and me on in pushing for the problems and solutions that we identified to be implemented not just locally with the care services where my father lived but also nationally as what happened to him can be multiplied many times over.

If you want proof of this then you only have to (more…)

Disabled People Against Cuts – protest April 18th

18 April 2012

Disabled people Against Cuts

April 18th meet for 1.30 pm McDonalds Leicester Square.

Let us have text contact details if definitely coming. Access needs if any too.

Action will be around benefit cuts, care funding and Loss of Remploy jobs.

this affects older people too so bring your grannies and grandads too.

Contact mail@dpac.uk.net

Press release

Photo opportunity. Meet Leicester Square McDonalds, 1.30pm

DISABLED PEOPLE REFUSE TO SIT BACK AND BE SLOWLY KILLED

Already three-quarters of disabled people live in poverty yet the Condems seem determined to push people even further into destitution. It seems that this is a means of punishing them for daring to be or become disabled – something that can happen to anyone at anytime. This is part of the new economy and Condem society of Britain.

Linda Burnip co-founder of DPAC says  “If cuts to benefits don’t kill you slowly by leaving you starving or freezing to death in winter then massive cuts to care and support funding should finish off those Maria Miller, the so-called minister for disabled people, calls “unsustainable” a bit faster. “
Campaigners say disabled people are being unfairly picked on because they are seen as an easy target by millionaire politicians and the ex-banker Lord Freud in particular.
Disability benefits designed to pay the extra costs of disability and originally awarded for a lifetime term are being reassessed. Many who were certified by medically qualified and independent doctors are losing their meagre incomes to politically appointed and performance incentivised ATOS assessors.

Huge increases to hate crimes, cuts in housing benefits, cuts in public services, the closure of the Independent Living Fund, job losses in the public sector, closure of Remploy factories when unemployment is at a record high the list of attacks is endless.

Debbie Jolly another co-founder of DPAC says: “Disabled people will be descending on London again to tell all politicians we’ve had enough. We are fed up with being vilified as scroungers by successive governments, we are sick of hearing about disabled people who have died from neglect and lack of services or who have committed suicide because services and benefits were withdrawn from them. Debbie from Leicester says: “Disabled people will be descending on London again to tell all politicians we’ve had enough. We are fed up with being vilified as scroungers by successive governments, we are sick of hearing about disabled people who have died from neglect and lack of services or who have committed suicide because services and benefits were withdrawn from them. We are angry at the constant attacks by this government  because we are seen as an easy target .We want to make sure politicians know we will not accept these attacks on our lives any longer. “

ENDS

Contact-  Linda 0771 492 7533 or Adam 07801058235

Notes to editors:

Data from Family Resources Survey and the National Equalities Panel found that:

  • 75% of disabled women and 70% of disabled men are already at the bottom end of Britain’s income distribution scale living in poverty.
  • A tenth of disabled woman have incomes below £31 per week and a tenth of disabled men have incomes below £59 per week including earned income and benefits.
  • Under the coalition government’s economy drive disabled people are set to lose at least £140 per month through direct cuts to disability benefits (initially devised to pay the extra costs of being disabled) alone.
  • The Condems are removing DLA saying that the number of claimants must be reduced by half a million.
  • Employment Support Allowance and work capability assessments have been criticised by CAB, disability charities and Disabled People’s Organisations. ATOS healthcare failures are costing £50 million in additional appeal tribunal costs.
  • Housing Benefits for all tenants will be reduced. From October 2011 for those 2 million disabled people living in private rented accommodation and from 2013 for anyone living in social housing which is deemed too large for their needs
  • Added to that funding from the Independent Living Fund for care and support has now ceased to all new claimants and any additional needs cannot be met by them

Extra costs of disability to individuals

A Rowntree report (2004) found that the weekly income of disabled people who are solely dependent on benefits is approximately £200 below the amount required for them to ensure an acceptable, equitable quality of life’

However, even if receiving maximum benefits, disabled people still experience a substantial shortfall in income. The income of disabled people solely dependent on benefits, irrespective of the type or level of their need, is approximately £200 less than the weekly amount required for them to ensure a minimum standard of living.

Source: Disabled people’s costs of living: ‘More than you would think’ (2004) by Noel Smith, Sue Middleton, Kate Ashton-Brooks, Lynne Cox and Barbara Dobson with Lorna Reith, is published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (ISBN 1 85935 236 7,

Employment

The employment rates of disabled people are around 48% compared with around 78% of non-disabled people Source Labour Force Survey, Quarter 2,2010

 Only 20% of those with mental health problems are in employment- Source- Labour Force Survey, Jan-March 2009.
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. Please click here to sign Pat’s Petition  which calls on the government to –

“Stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families”

Once you have signed share it with all your contacts asking them to sign and pass on too.

WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER

.

End the Care Crisis – We cant afford not to

1 March 2012

Lobby 2012

We are entering a key time for our social care system. Our social care system is broken. It cannot cope with a rapidly ageing population and positive impact of people living longer with illness and disability.

Read in full here

On Tuesday 6th March 2012 we will hold a lobby of Parliament to take our message to MPs across all parties. People from up and down the country will be travelling to the Houses of Parliament in London to present their concerns and lobby their MP.

Take part in the lobby

Take part online

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If you are worried to changes in services, charges being increased, eligibility criteria being tightened – please sign Pats Petition and gather as much support as you can.

 

Health Committee-Scotland ‘Some people are suicidal’

23 November 2011

Keith Robertson from the Scottish Disability Equality Forum told MSPs some people are becoming suicidal even at the thought of some of the reforms in the UK Welfare Reform Bill.

Mr Robertson was giving evidence, along side a panel of representatives from disability and mental health charities and agencies , to the Health Committee on the impact of the Wellfare Reform Bill (UK) .

READ IN FULL HERE AND ALSO WATCH VIDEO

The pick of the week ahead in Parliament

13 November 2011

 

In the Lords (from 2.30pm) its day five on the detail of the Health and Social Care Bill – want to bet they’ll need more than the planned 14 committee days? The key bone of contention will be a group of amendments on charities and VAT. And watch out for questions prompted by the release of the Department of Health’s Strategic Risk Register, a document detailing possible risks to patient safety, finances and the working of the NHS from the bill’s proposals.

Meanwhile, in grand committee (starting at 3.30pm) peers will be continuing their work on the Welfare Reform Bill – and should move on to one of the most important issues, the plans to replace Disability Living Allowance. There won’t be votes at this stage, but the discussions could well result in amendments at report stage, some time in the New Year.

BBC News – Viewing guide: The pick of the week ahead in Parliament

What EVERY MP should know about welfare reform

16 October 2011

Sue Marsh of Diary of a Benefit Scrounger  has sent this over asking everyone to help raise awareness.

Since Employment and Support Allowance was introduced back in 2008, campaigners and those affected have warned that it is flawed. Not because people must face assessment to qualify for support but because the wrong people are declared “fit for work”.

People clearly too disabled to work get harassed and pressurised into work programmes they clearly cannot comply with, while the number of “cheats” or “scroungers” caught, remains at exactly the same level it always did.

Throughout the last year, we have warned of a tipping point.  With over 110,000 decisions already found to be wrong and overturned, 11,000 people a week are being put through flawed assessments. It is only a matter of time before this becomes the toxic story of recent years. MP mailbags are already bursting with letters about this.

Read in full here

What EVERY MP should know about welfare reform

Can you help raise awareness by sharing this post with your contacts, on Facebook and twitter too.

Contact your MP with your concerns.

Please leave a comment on Sues’ blog or contact her direct with links to any reports in your own local newspapers. suey2yblog@hotmail.co.uk

For those that dont know, Sue is one of the founder members of  The Broken Of Britain team

 

MPs demand end to closures of council-run elderly care homes and call for enquiry into deaths

14 October 2011

Every day we hear of local authorities closing, withdrawing or cutting back on essential facilities and services for the vulnerable and their carers. The already inadequate care system is dying on its feet. We have to halt that process, not next year, not the year after that, we have to halt it now. Caring for the most vulnerable in our Society should be a Government priority not something that is left on a metaphorical backburner while vulnerable people suffer.

Therefore CarerWatch welcome the call from MPs calling on a block to the closure of local authority homes for the elderly.  Full details below.

We urge everyone to contact their MP and ask for their support in signing  EDM 2251 . You can find contact details here

Media Release

October 14, 2011

A BLOCK on the closure of local-authority elderly care homes has been called for by MPs concerned that the care crisis highlighted by the collapse of Southern Cross has left frail old people frightened and in danger of death brought on by being forced to move.

 An early-day motion tabled in parliament by Hayes and Harlington MP John McDonnell calls for a moratorium on closures and an enquiry to establish how many deaths have been caused by home closures.

The move has been welcomed by campaigners and pensioners’ groups who urged MPs to sign the motion in order to prevent further unnecessary deaths.

 National Pensioners’ Convention general secretary Dot Gibson said:

“It is a brutal fact that frail, elderly people are likely to die if they are forced to move out of a care facility that has become home.

 “Older people should not be seen as mere figures on a private care company’s balance sheet, and with the collapse of Southern Cross and the unravelling of the private social care market it is essential to stop the closure of any more local-authority-run homes.

 “It’s time for a national care service that begins to look after our most vulnerable pensioners in a way they deserve.”

Campaigning lawyer Yvonne Hossack said:

Since 1997 I have seen the devastating effects of care home closures on mortality.

“Too often those charged with the welfare of our old soldiers and their widows trot out the lie that there is no risk provided the best methods of eviction are used – and all, let us be clear, to cash in the value of the land that the innocent and confused old lady once called her home.

 “It is time now to stop the slaughter”.

Phillippa Wood of CarerWatch, the online campaigning group for carers, said:

“Every day we hear of local authorities closing, withdrawing or cutting back on essential facilities and services for the vulnerable and their carers.

“The already inadequate care system is dying on its feet and we have to halt that process now.”

MP John McDonnell said:

“There is a huge and growing body of evidence that closure of care homes has caused the early deaths of frail, elderly people forced to leave their homes.

“The collapse of private homes and the shocking revelations of abuse have shown what happens when care is farmed out to privateers who are interested only in profit.

“We urgently need to see a stop put to any further closures of local-authority elderly care homes and for an enquiry into the misery and death that closures have already caused.”

ends

Full text of EDM 2251 and contacts follow

EDM 2251

DEATHS FOLLOWING RESIDENTIAL HOME CLOSURES

tabled by John McDonnell MP

That this House notes with deep concern the worsening crisis for elderly care as growing numbers of local authority and private care homes face closure; acknowledges concerns that the loss of elderly people’s care homes causes fear, anxiety and, in many cases, a higher mortality rate when vulnerable, elderly people are forced to leave their homes; further notes that the Southern Cross crisis will increase the need for local authority care; and therefore calls on the Government to hold a public inquiry into the deaths following closures of local authority care homes and impose a moratorium on the closure of local authority care homes until that inquiry publishes its results to ensure that vulnerable, elderly people’s lives are not put at further risk.

Contacts

For further information please contact: Sarah Evans T: 07941 227757


National Pensioners Convention, call Neil Duncan Jordan – T: 07940-357-608

Yvonne Hossack- T: 01536 518638

CarerWatch: Philippa Wood at admin@carerwatch.com

With many thanks to  Sarah Evans  for her work on this issue

Three little words – ‘Tax Payers Money’

11 October 2011

Blog piece by Pat Onions

There is a word or three I loathe.

More than the Employment Support Allowance.

More than the Work Capability Assessment and probably more than the Personal Independent Payment.

‘Tax Payers Money.’

I have been listening to Ms Miller talking about the new PIP. She sounded quite nice and chatty. Of course they will continue to pay £40 million to those disabled. Good. She then used those words… from ‘Tax Payers Money.

It is a move to stir up the people of this country. She could just say the amount which will be paid. Why add those 3 words at the end?

Effect of course is to make me feel worthless and useless. The effect is to let the ordinary man or woman, who works and pays tax, where their deductions are going.  I too am ordinary but I can’t use the library, drive on the roads or play ping-pong at the leisure centre. That of course is totally different. It always is when it comes to those of us with a disability.

Ordinary men, and women, would have no idea if they weren’t reminded at every verse end. They would sit at home watching another reality show on their 40″ Plasma screen. They’re probably not wondering too much where all the tax they pay each month is being spent. It is the duty of politician, newspaper and television reporters to tell them. And they do. Constantly. All the time and endlessly.

Like many others I did work. I did pay my taxes and did pay my NI. I still pay taxes on everything I eat, drink, sit on or sleep in. I don’t think the air that I breathe comes ‘from Tax Payers Money’  but I wouldn’t put any money on it.

When you are poorly and hurting…say with an abscess and extreme toothache…. you don’t want some smart Alec telling you that your dentist isn’t funded from ‘Tax payers Money’ anymore. You don’t want to hear that you have to dig deep in your pocket for some painkillers. You want support and help. Oh dear…. perhaps involving the NHS as an example is not such a good idea.

I get reminded that I have languished for more than 10 years on benefits. Benefits paid from ‘Tax Payers Money’. I haven’t actually languished at all. I have a rare, irreversible, hereditary condition. Proper experts diagnosed me, not a nurse playing at being an ophthalmic consultant with years of training & experience. The consultant recognised my disability and knew I would not be able to work. Nothing in society or the work place has changed in all those years to enable me to work. So why oh why do Politicians believe it has?

They can beat me with sticks; tell me if I don’t work I lose my benefits. It makes not one jot of difference to my disability. It is unchanged and always will be.

By taking my ‘Tax Payers Money’ from me it will mean I don’t eat, clothe myself and lose the roof over my head. They can assess me; reassess me as many times as they decide. I have no eyes, and no matter how many assessments, those eyes will never grow back and see again. Somehow Politicians seem to think they have a magic power to make them work…after all ‘Work Pays.’

Pat Onions

Major shake-up of adult social care in Lincolnshire is approved

5 October 2011

 

HUNDREDS of elderly and vulnerable people will have their home help removed as part of the biggest shake-up of adult social care in Lincolnshire for more than 60 years.

County councillors agreed yesterday to remove care allowances to people who need help with simple household tasks like cooking or cleaning.

Major shake-up of adult social care in Lincolnshire is approved | This is Lincolnshire

An opportunity to raise YOUR voice to break the silence

21 September 2011

This is a joint venture between CarerWatch, The Broken of Britain, Disabled people Against Cuts and ACTnow

Everyone is urged to support this.

To all our members and supporters;

The Labour party conference starts in Liverpool on Saturday. As we all know, Labour were the architects of Employment Support Allowance and the ‘not fit for purpose’ Work Capability Assessment which is so stressful and traumatic it was linked to the suicide of claimants whilst Labour were still in power. The Labour party are the official party of opposition, but they are not opposing the Welfare Reform Bill as they should be and seem to have forgotten that the 10 million sick and or disabled people plus carers, friends and family in the UK have the power to vote. It is time for us to remind Labour that they will not get any of our votes if they do not start to oppose the parts of the Welfare Reform Bill set to return sick people, disabled people and carers to a life of desperation, dependency, despair and charity.

We are asking you to help with a mass email to the Labour party to remind them of our voting power. Please include the following details in your email and send it to Ed Miliband, Margaret Curran (shadow minister for disability) and Liam Byrne (shadow minister for DWP). If you have time please also email it to any Labour MP and particularly any members of the shadow cabinet. We have provided a list of email contacts below.

Please aim to send your email at 11am tomorrow (Thursday the 22nd September) If you can’t send the email at 11am, don’t worry, just please try to send it at any time between then and the end of Labour party conference on Wednesday 29th September.

The email subject should read “Your Silence Is Deafening”

We suggest embedding a link to this youtube video “The Sound of Silence” To embed the video into your email just copy and paste the link below.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BvsX03LOMhI  

Then please copy the following text into your email;

Dear (insert name here)

‘The 10 million disabled people in this country plus their carers, relatives and friends are watching what your party do in relation to disability issues and wondering why you seem disinterested in trying to get their votes by opposing the savage attacks against disabled people being made by the Coalition government. During conference season we wish to remind you, the architects of Employment and Support Allowance to ‘never fall ill, never grow old, never become disabled, never become a carer’, for if you do, as we have found, not even Labour will speak up for you.’

If you would like to add a short, personal message explaining to Labour how you feel about their lack of support for sick, disabled people and carers then please include it after the suggested text. You might also like to include a photo of yourself, or perhaps a photo of what disability, sickness or caring means to you. Don’t worry if you don’t want to personalise the email, sending the suggested text is fine.

Contact details below

Ed Miliband MP, Leader of the Labour Party
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 4778
ed.miliband.mp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Work & Pensions
Liam Byrne
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 6953
Fax: 020 7219 1431
byrnel@parliament.uk
 
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 8102
Fax: 020 7219 6656
margaret.curran.mp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Home Secretary and Minister for Women and Equalities
Rt Hon Yvette Cooper MP
coopery@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Chief Secretary
Angela Eagle
eaglea@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills
John Denham
denhamj@parliament.uk
 
Cabinet Office and Minister for the Olympics
Tessa Jowell
jowellt@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government
Caroline Flint
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 4407
Fax: 020 7219 1277
caroline.flint.mp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media & Sport
Ivan Lewis
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 2609
lewisi@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Leader of the House of Commons 
Hilary Benn
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 5770
hilary.benn.mp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Defence
Jim Murphy
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 4615
Fax: 020 7219 5657
jimmurphymp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Mary Creagh
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 6984/020 7219 8766
Fax: 020 7219 4257
creaghm@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Education and Election Coordinator
Andy Burnham
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 8250
andy.burnham.mp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Lord Chancellor, Secretary of State for Justice
Sadiq Khan
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 6967
Fax: 020 7219 6477
sadiqkhanmp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
Meg Hillier
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 5325
Fax: 020 7219 8768
meghilliermp@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Health
John Healey
 
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 6359
Fax: 020 7219 2451
healeyj@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
Shaun Woodward
 
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 2680
woodwardsh@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland
Ann McKechin
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 8239
Fax: 020 7219 1770
ann.mckechin.mp@parliament.uk
Constituency
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Transport
Maria Eagle
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 4019
Fax: 020 7219 1157
eaglem@parliament.uk
 
Shadow Secretary of State for Wales
Peter Hain
House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA
Tel: 020 7219 3925
Fax: 020 7219 3816
hainp@parliament.uk
 
 
Steven Timms MP
timmss@parliament.uk
stephen@stephentimms.org.uk

Karen Buck MP

buckk@parliament.uk

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