I have seen an article dating back to 2014 through Rethink where Clinical Psychologist Kajori Mukherjee spoke at a summit which brought together NHS leaders from across England to identify problems in the system that are preventing investment in quality services for people with Schizophrenia and psychosis which was organised by Rethink.
The only intervention I have seen is drugs. These drugs can be given to a child not tried and tested as I have seen in my own family when that child has experienced trauma – it was not counselling that was on offer.
I would agree this is expensive especially private sector wards costing £12500 per week that are quick to prescribe drugs and not to assess someone properly so in actual fact a complete waste of money so I have seen.
NHS in-patient ward is also not therapeutic – there is much improvement that could be made to the wards – no safes working and Elizabeth has had possessions stolen. Nothing to do at weekends. If there are very disturbed patients then the atmosphere can be volatile and noisy and threatening – not the right place for trauma victims or for anyone to get well.
“we’re absolutely committed to making sure people with mental health problems get the same standard of care as those with physical illnesses – we-re always looking for new ideas for how we can do things better and how we can use the resource we have as effectively as possible” – I would suggest turning to http://www.working-to-recovery in that case as my daughter came back well and we have never seen such improvement. There was no need to drug people, forcibly inject or give them ECT and Elizabeth was treated in a humane manner. It was discovered during her stay with MH professionals we provided privately that (just like back in 2008) it was thought Elizabeth had a learning disability not Schizophrenia for which there is no such thing in any case as I have proof of this. So all along vast sums of money have been wasted giving the wrong care of enormous quantities of mind altering drugs without thought for her physical health or correct diagnosis.
It is all very well stating about saving money in the community but if there is not the staff trained like Working to Recovery then there is no tolerance and no understanding in how to deal with that person, especially if they have a learning disability rather than a mental illness.
I would point out to Victoria Bleazard that vast sums of money are wasted under the mental health system – going to the private sector who provide similar “care” in prison like facilities costing an absolute fortune per week. I would point out that patients are being over-drugged and that leads to physical health problems instead of looking to see if there are any underlying physical health problems that may be the cause of the so called symptoms. You cannot treat a rape and abuse victim with huge quantities of drugs as these will not be effective and neither are they recommended under NICE Guidelines.
If there is a conflict of opinion by professionals this is not taken seriously and ignored. That leads to someone having a lifetime of wrong treatment. Treatment is experimentation by use of mind altering drugs that not everyone can metabolise. No endocrinal tests are given as a matter of course. Proper therapy such as EMDR/psychotherapy are not given in favour of drugging so that person is discharged into the community without having any underlying issues dealt. If they suffer from PTSD and affected by trauma then this is very bad as that person can react to triggering situations but if given the right care before discharge then that person can get well and the right care is not drugs that do not work and if someone cannot metabolise these drugs they this can result in psychosis. The drugs themselves cause psychosis.
The drugs have done nothing for Elizabeth except make her ill – a complete and utter waste of money. It has been terrible to watch Elizabeth having difficulty swallowing, choking and complaining of not being able to control her tongue, feeling dizzy, feeling constantly tired and piling of weight and also she has felt suicidal on the drugs and now they are talking about drugging again and I fear that they wish to dump her back to the same scheme as the cheapest option without any appropriate therapy by qualified staff or nice things such as music and art therapy like we provided. I am fed up with hearing about cuts to spending when I see huge amounts wasted on private sector care which is no better.
If there was a particular type of private sector care like I have identified (not owned by multi-billion dollar corporate providers all for profit) then that is a different matter and not a waste of money. I would rather Elizabeth be sent first to one of the wonderful places that I have identified who offer the right kind of care, before placement into the community after 13 weeks on acute wards where she was further traumatised.
When someone returns to the ward like a revolving door case to hospital it is a waste of money because the care in the community has failed because it is insufficient and does not offer tolerance/understanding in cases of learning disability.
When we had Elizabeth at home we have nothing in terms of support and that was the biggest saving all along.
In schemes people can go downhill if they do not eat properly. Elizabeth feels tired and just wants to be left alone – she is amongst staff instead of family but if we had been given support via the learning disability department when she came home then things might have been different. However the issues of complex PTSD had never been dealt with over 11 years and cannot be on acute wards or scheme. This is much more specialised and I think it is wrong to just immediately place someone in the community without addressing these issues (not by the use of drugs which are not recommended under NICE guidelines) but by proper therapy and why isn’t this proper therapy available in every local area as people are not getting the correct care?
Assessments Prior to Sectioning:
“if it appears the detained person may have a learning disability, every effort must be made to have that person assessed by a specialist in Learning Disability or to seek specialist advice if other services are unable to attend, unless this would lead to unacceptable delays in completing the assessment” .
Can vary from hospital to hospital but here are some comments therein:
“Occasionally such a transfer will need to take place at short notice to ensure we have enough available beds in this hospital to admit and care for acutely ill patients.” It is important that you, your family and friends understand that you may not be able to stay in hospital whilst waiting for longer term arrangements to be made. We will work closely with you and ensure you are kept fully informed.” – We as a family were only told at the last minute that Elizabeth was moving – I felt happy for her on the one hand but did not agree with their decision as I knew that underlying issues were not resolved or treated. I felt that this was not good at all and that they should have looked at the places I recommended that could have provided a year long programme that would really tackle the serious underlying issues as a result of being abused under previous care in the community.
It is also documented that : Communication and consultation with the patient, their family and carers are of prime importance in ensuring patient experiences care as a coherent and coordinated pathway. This is not my experience – it is hard to get through to people sometimes on the phone. The Responsible Clinician has never phoned me back. My daughter was not consulted that they were cancelling her solicitors to appeal on Section 2.
It has been horrible to see Elizabeth on the ward over this Bank Holiday weekend – it would have benefitted her to be able to stroll out in the grounds as she has been allowed before so I see this as punishment – total punishment by the Doctors concerned and it is all about power and control as patients are not treated as “patients” but criminals.
Transfer to community has failed as the main concern was getting her out of hospital so that a bed was available for someone else but how could a risk assessment have been done properly with due regard to health and safety when “services” were not even up and running until later on the next day.
I would conclude that I am disappointed in the procedures that have failed and will not attend tomorrow’s meeting but am sending carers to represent Elizabeth in my absence.
What I would like to see:
I would have preferred her to go on a long term programme – not more than a year at The Retreat or Khiron House or Amitola Community. If she is to return to that scheme then I would like to see her left completely alone in order that she can do things in her own time and adjust and then she will join in. It should be respected that Elizabeth still feels the physical pain from withdrawal of anti-psychotic drugs given to her over the past 11 years, none of them have worked. I would like to see her get the right kind of care but so would so many others that I am in touch with and what needs to be thought of is the kind of training given and I have proven what works with Elizabeth – a different approach needs to be taken in some cases.
I am also supposed to be speaking to The Executive Director of Patient Services tomorrow. I doubt Elizabeth has even seen her care plan. She does not have an advocate so I am providing advocates myself who are totally independent and they need to get those safes fixed as a matter of urgency.
It is not good that there is nothing to do at the weekends when if less money was spent on private sector care all of this could be provided.