I have posted here before about my 82yr old Mum. She has been admitted to hospital three times this year, first time staying a month, then two weeks, and we are now at three weeks on her third stay.
I think I have finally got her under the care of a really good specialist, who thinks she has severe anxiety and depression which is treatable with medication and therapy. He wants her to stay as an in-patient in a mental health unit.
She has lots of issues at the moment with memory and confusion. When the consultant first suggested moving to a mental health unit, she said “no”, then “ok”.
The doctors seeing her then thought she didn’t have capacity to understand decisions. We talked about assessment under the mental health act, with the consultant thinking Mum would be detained and could be kept in for treatment.
The assessment took place when Mum was lucid, and the doctors and social workers disagreed. They suggested that Mum be sent home with community support - though this has been and has failed three times, due to Mum’s anxiety and lack of engagement. After the meeting, Mum couldn’t remember what had happened or what had been said to her at all. She has some moments of clarity, but is mostly confused.
Now we are very concerned that Mum will be sent home, still unwell. Last time she was admitted to hospital she was hypothermic and had been standing naked in her kitchen with windows open and the heating off.
I live 30 miles away, work and have 3 primary school age children. Her cousin, who is 90 visits, but feels he cannot cope with being with her when she is in a state of extreme anxiety and agitation. Previously he has spent 9 hours a day with her, because he cares, and to some extent this masked her difficulties.
We have been through the cycle of hospital, home, care failing and readmission several times . I find myself liaising with 21 different professionals and teams who want to support my Mum, but don’t seem to communicate. The impact on my mental health is significant, and also for her cousin.
Is there a way we can have the teams take this into account? We know if they send her home, it will fail and we will go through the cycle all over again, and I don’t feel I can cope with that.
Could I ask for her to be treated in a NHS hub or respite setting instead?
I plan to talk to Age UK for advice too.