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Christmas in hospital - AIBU to feel so disappointed and not know how to make the best of it?

37 replies

Mogs43 · 21/12/2019 12:56

My father is terminally ill - as an only child of divorced parents I am his main carer (as well as working full time etc). Unfortunately he wasn't very well at the beginning of December but is now much improved. However I was told yesterday that he can't be discharged from hospital because the council can't get a care package in place by Christmas. I dont know why but it has hit me really hard. I can't stop ugly crying etc. This is likely to be his last Christmas and I had wanted to make it special. Now it will be spent in a grotty, dark, dirty hospital room (the tiny window looks out onto a wall, the floors are sticky etc -it feels just like hell). This wouldn't matter if the staff were upbeat etc but most are quite miserable/lots of bank staff/short of staff/under pressure etc. I do understand its not an easy job but there are other wards that manage to be a bit more upbeat. For example, I asked about my buying/putting up a little tree by his bed or in the communal area but was told no - most of the staff don't celebrate Christmas/get in the way etc. I know its only one day and shouldn't matter but it has been a truly awful year and him being stuck in hospital this ward just feels like the final straw. I feel so useless and upset. I know I need to pull myself together and focus on my father and making the best of it. Any suggestions?

OP posts:
Likethebattle · 21/12/2019 14:16

Wheelchair and ask taxi firm to send an accessible vehicle. Therefore you reduce the ‘lifting and handling’ risk. Two people are required to hoist a patient who has limited mobility so this is why they need double handed care. As long as he is hoisted in the hospital it would be fine.

FoamingAtTheUterus · 21/12/2019 14:20

Quite often legally, ie in a care environment 2 to 1 care is recommended but we all know home is different and there are many, single carers doing personal care which would require two carers in a home.........I'd break him out for the day. Next year you may not have that option. So make the most of him whilst you can.

SDTGisAnEvilWolefGenius · 21/12/2019 14:23

@Mogs43 - if you contact a nursing agency, you may be able to get a nurse or care assistant to help you take your dad out of hospital for the day.

I hope you can get something sorted. {{{hugs}}}

HyacynthBucket · 21/12/2019 14:26

This may not work, but Age Concern have volunteers who help with light tasks around the home, and will also take people out to shop, etc. If you were very lucky, your local Age Concern might have someone with experience of two handed, who was also willing to help you take your father out, even on Christmas Day. There are such saintly people around. Or the Red Cross might be able to advise on the same lines.
Good luck, OP, and best wishes to both you and your father.

DecemberSnow · 21/12/2019 14:27

If he is just there because he is waiting for a care package, there is no need to not have a tree, fuck other people not celebrating it.
Your dad does. Just being a little artificial one in.... Can you take in a radio player so he can listen to music quietly?
Do you live far from the hospital? Could u cling film a dinner and take it? If not, get some yummy things from m&s and sit with him and listen to the radio.
It really does suck, so sorry

DecemberSnow · 21/12/2019 14:27

We waited 6 weeks for a care package last December and it was awful

MissMoogle · 21/12/2019 14:32

OP YANBU. I have a family member stuck in hospital this christmas too, due to lack of capacity to get her care plan in place before christmas (although she is not terminally ill).

Does your NHS trust not have a "hospital to home" service that could pick up his care in the interim, which is health care workers who come in twice a day or so, as part of rehab and so on? The hospital physiotherapy team may know the answer to this.

Unfortunately for my mum, this isn't an option to get her home for xmas but it may well help in your father's situation.

Cooper88 · 21/12/2019 14:39

OP I am a carer and what I would say is if your dad needs a double up for care that means it will be manual handling etc. This would be unsafe for you to attempt yourself. If you do get day leave then please book a wheelchair accessible taxi.

GooseberryJam · 21/12/2019 14:41

Agree with @OhTheRoses - do what she says. There is more than this they can do. I got my dad moved from hospital to a care place in a very short time by being polite but very firm and very, very persistent. Rang many people, rang often, rang them back. Good luck. Flowers

Abraid2 · 21/12/2019 14:55

It's irrelevant what the staff's religions are. Christmas is still a culturally very significant feast in the UK and the terminally ill CHristmas-celebrating patient comes first. I bet they're not the ones who are behind this attitude, though. And I bet other patients and visitors would like to see a little Christmas cheer. My father has very recently died and I know I do.

I hope you both have the best possible celebration.

HamsterHolder · 21/12/2019 14:57

You can take him home against advice if he wishes to leave/has capacity to make decision or you have power attorney health. The problem you may then have is that if discharged into your care because you can cope it could be used against you when trying to implement the care package at a later date.

Unfortunately this is a very very common problem and why the nhs has been widely against another Tory government. Medical treatment ended but can't discharge due to insufficient social care and without a massive influx of labour willing to undertake this work in community and the funds made available to pay for it one we all have to live with :(. Bed blockers

Horsepants · 21/12/2019 15:02

The therapistsmightbe concerned as to how you'll be able to transfer him safely in and out a cab plus if he needs help to get on/off the toilet. They're probably thinking about your safety as much as his. The last thing you want to do is end up with a back injury.

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