Grandmother forced to spend two weeks in hospital without once being offered a shower — but she got a superbug and bedsores!
A disabled grandmother has been left distraught after ‘rude’ nurses failed to offer her a shower or hair wash throughout her two week stay in hospital – where she also contracted superbug MRSA.
Dorothy Middleton, aged 77, has been left in fear of returning to hospital following the shocking treatment which her family have labelled ‘absolutely atrocious’.
Her daughter Dorothy Snowden, aged 54, made the claims against Pinderfields Hospital in Wakefield, West Yorkshire where she was initially admitted for shoulder pain on June 12.
Mrs Snowden said: ‘It was absolutely atrocious how she has been treated. ‘There is no patient care in that hospital.’
Mrs Middleton is partially paralysed following a stroke 20 years ago and also suffers from diabetes.
Mrs Snowden claimed her mother was not once offered a shower or hair wash and nurses banged her knee against a bed rail, but when the grandmother complained she was told by nurses that it was arthritis.
Although scans were taken of the pensioner’s stomach, knee and hip, her daughter claims the shoulder pain was not investigated.
She was also asked to bring her mother’s insulin from home because staff were unable to access any in the hospital.
Mrs Snowden added: ‘On one occasion my mum asked for a bed pan and when she rang the buzzer the nurse came in and said “what do you want” and when mum said she wanted a bed pan the nurse said “what again?”. ‘I’m absolutely gobsmacked they can treat patients like this.
‘When she was discharged we were told she had MRSA but she didn’t have it when she was admitted and the staff said she’d got it there. ‘The discharge sheet also said she had no pressure sores but she has some on her back and in her groin which is infected.’
The grandmother said: ‘Some of the nurses didn’t even sit me up to have my meal and you can’t lie down to eat.’
On the day of Mrs Middleton’s discharge, Mrs Snowdon spoke to the ward sister who she said apologised for the level of patient care and admitted that the pensioner had not been offered a wash during her stay.
Mrs Snowden said: ‘We have to do something because there is going to be another patient in that bed and another, until someone does something about it nothing will change at the hospital. ‘My mum hasn’t been at all well since coming out of hospital but she doesn’t want to go back there.’
Tracey McErlain-Burns, chief nurse at the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust said: ‘All complaints and expressions of concern are taken seriously and arrangements are in place for matron to meet with the family to answer questions and provide an explanation. ‘Following that meeting I am confident that matron will take the necessary steps to ensure that any lessons are learnt.’
Probe into 25 patient deaths after Trust’s ‘poor record keeping’ led to treatment delays
The deaths of 25 patients are being reviewed after a leading London NHS Trust admitted ‘poor record keeping’ meant they had lost track of hundreds of patients. Three local authorities said they were ‘extremely concerned’ after Imperial College Healthcare admitted 900 patients records were incomplete back in May.
A review group was set up to look at 74 affected patients who had since died. Doctors have so far found that delays caused by data issues did not cause harm in 49 cases, however 25 cases are still being investigated.
At the height of the problem in February around 3,500 patients were waiting for longer than the 18-week target for treatments or operations. It has emerged that some cancer patients ended up on a waiting list for up to two years when they should have been seen within a fortnight.
The Trust has also been unable to get in contact with 86 people who were referred for a possible cancer diagnosis after letters sent to their last known addresses in May went unanswered. It means potentially that dozens of cancer patients may have died or suffered complications as a result of mismanagement.
The problems first emerged in January after the Trust admitted finding that hundreds of patient records were incomplete. Files on some patients were opened but not closed while others were duplicated.
A joint letter from Westminster, Hammersmith and Fulham, and Kensington and Chelsea Councils said they were unhappy that the Trust had responded to their resulting scrutiny with a ‘lack of openness and transparency.’
Councillor Sarah Richardson of the Health Policy Scrutiny Committee at Westminster Council, told Mail Online: ‘Imperial College NHS Trust have acted dangerously and irresponsibly by allowing patients entrusted to their care suffer a possible deterioration of their condition.
‘Managers were more worried about their reputation than about patient safety. In a public forum they said no-one had come to harm. We believe they deliberately misled the council.’
The Trust runs four London hospitals: Charing Cross, Hammersmith, Queen Charlotte’s and Chelsea and St Mary’s.
The Department of Health said the errors ‘may have caused distress and uncertainty for vulnerable patients’
A spokeswoman for the Trust says they don’t believe any patients have come to serious harm as a result of the lost data. ‘To date we have found no evidence that these patients have come to clinical harm as a result of our poor record keeping,’ she said. ‘We are extremely sorry that this situation was not identified and resolved earlier.’
A Department of Health spokesperson said: ‘The situation at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust was completely unacceptable, and may have caused distress and uncertainty for vulnerable patients.
‘That’s why when we became aware of this situation in April we sought assurances that this would become an urgent part of the work being undertaken by a team of external experts who were working within the Trust.
‘Those experts have helped the Trust to make sure that the right processes are in place so patients should get the care they need, when they need it in future. We will continue to monitor the situation.’
Border shambles lets 150,000 migrants overstay their British visas as officials have no idea if they are still living here illegally
A new backlog of more than 150,000 immigration cases has been uncovered by inspectors in the latest border shambles.
The total – which is about the same as the population of Oxford – is increasing by nearly 100 every day.
It is made up of migrants whose visas allowing them to stay in Britain have expired and who have been refused permission to stay on.
But border officials have no idea if they have actually left the country or are still living here illegally.
And inspectors found the beleaguered UK Border Agency has no plan for finding out how many remain, or taking action to remove those who are still here.
In 40 per cent of cases examined by inspectors, the migrants had not even been sent a letter telling them they must quit Britain.
The ‘significant’ new backlog emerged in a report by John Vine, the chief inspector of the UK Border Agency.
The report, published today, revealed that in mid-December, the total number of cases in the Migration Refusal Pool across the UK stood at 159,313. In the preceding two months, it had increased by 5,492 – or nearly 100 cases a day.
Cases put in the pool were foreign students or workers here legally who applied for their visas to be extended but were refused, and told they must leave within 28 days.
Mr Vine said urgent action was needed to tackle it because, currently, tracking down and removing such illegal migrants was not seen as a priority.’
‘The agency does not know how many of these individuals have left the country or who are waiting to be removed,’ he said. ‘I also saw no evidence that there is a clear plan in place for the agency to deal with this stream of work to ensure this does not become another backlog.’
Home Office officials last night refused to say what the total is now, saying they would not provide a ‘running commentary’.
Sir Andrew Green, chairman of the think-tank MigrationWatch, said: ‘It is vital to the credibility of the whole immigration system that people who have no right to be in Britain should be removed. ‘There clearly needs to be a much greater focus on this. It is absurd, for example, that people who overstay should not even be contacted to be told to go.’
‘I am astonished that the UKBA has no idea where 159,000 individuals – the size of a city like Oxford – have gone since their application was rejected.’
The report looked specifically at immigration officials in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, where immigration officials massively underestimated the number of such cases in their area.
They put the total at between 400 to 600 but the real total was 1,893, more than three times higher. A detailed examination of a sample of cases revealed barely half were recorded as having left the country, and only one had been forcibly removed. Others had launched new appeals or could not be removed because of human rights or legal barriers.
In 40 per cent of cases migrants were not even sent the legal letters telling them they must leave the country.
The report said: ‘The issue is a national problem. We believe the agency needs to be much more pro-active in providing a clear strategic direction for its staff to follow. This should stop the already significant backlog from increasing and ensure steps are taken to reduce it.’
Immigration Minister Damian Green said: ‘Under the last government there was no effective strategy in place to ensure migrants left at the end of their time in the UK.
‘The UK Border Agency is now working through a group of potential over-stayers to identify those who have not left. We are also working closely with other government departments to create a hostile environment which makes it much harder for migrants to live in the UK illegally.’
Keith Vaz, chairman of the Commons home affairs select committee, said: ‘I am astonished that the UKBA has no idea where 159,000 individuals – the size of a city like Oxford – have gone since their application was rejected. This is yet another group of cases we did not know about.’
One woman finally gets it figured: What feminists have taught her will never get her a man
Being “demure” must be the word feminists hate most — but it sums up what works for a woman who is sexually normal
At least it does in Britain and Australia. Not so sure about NYC. Maybe men there judge women by their Mommas
My friend Anna is attractive, confident and has a high-powered job in publishing — yet she has spent most of her adult life desperately trying to find a man.
One evening, when she was in her early 30s, she found herself sitting next to a good-looking, single architect called Chris at a dinner party. Their friends thought them perfectly suited to each other and were trying a bit of match-making.
By the time the main course arrived, Anna had told Chris exactly what he was doing wrong in his career, made jokes about his dress sense and criticised his choice of car. Chris barely got a word in edgeways.
For her part, Anna thought she was being helpful and amusing, and couldn’t understand why Chris never called her.
Ten years later, during which time Chris had got married and divorced, they met by chance at a house party. This time Anna, by now 41, was less bossy and far more relaxed; she let Chris speak, she laughed rather than criticised and was a much nicer person to be with. Within months, they were living together and now they are married with a baby on the way.
Anna’s story is far from unique. In fact, before she changed her ways, she was typical of a growing breed of 30 and 40-something women who are so snippy, critical and exacting that they have no hope of ever snaring a man.
I should know — for I’m one of them. Single at the age of 39, I’ve often wondered why none of my relationships lasted the distance, but had always put it down to luck and timing — assuming I had neither on my side.
But recently, my friend Steven threw some cold, harsh light on the subject. ‘Your problem is that you’re really snippy,’ he said.
‘Snippy?’ I asked, not entirely sure what he meant.
‘Yes, snippy,’ he said. ‘Abrupt. Critical. If someone says or does something wrong, then you’re onto it straight away. Men will ignore a lot of things if they fancy someone — a weird dress sense, or taking hours getting ready to go out — but they hate being put down or made to feel small. You can be funny, but sometimes it’s way too close for comfort.’
This wasn’t a nice thing to be told. But what he was saying did have a ring of truth about it.
I’d thought I was quite witty, to be honest, with my quick quips and smart comments. Now it seemed that what I thought was funny could be completely off-putting to men.
Steven tried to cheer me up. ‘Don’t worry, it’s not just you,’ he said, explaining that in his opinion there were lots of women in their 30s who were so uptight and critical they just weren’t any fun to be around. ‘And you wonder why men go for younger women, who are way more relaxed?’ he asked.
My sister agreed with Steven. She said that what I thought were entertaining and witty comments could come across as criticisms or complaints.
I thought of Anna and how she had missed out on ten years of being with Chris because, as she admits, she was just too sharp.
‘It wasn’t just Chris — I ruined things with other men,’ she says. ‘If I was on a date in a restaurant and I didn’t like the table we were at, I’d insist on moving. I didn’t like it when trains were delayed, or the traffic was bad, and I showed it. It was because I wanted everything to be perfect, but I think it came across as being fussy or critical.’
Perhaps, women my age are putting men off with our demanding, critical natures?
My single female friends back up this theory. One is so curt, I’m almost too scared to call her at work for fear of inviting a tirade. Another will always pick the venue when going on a date because she doesn’t trust the guy to choose a nice place. It is an affliction that affects celebrity women too.
Last year, X Factor judge Kelly Rowland, 31, told reporters: ‘The desire to be in control and decide everything myself as much as possible gets in the way. The fact that I can act a little bossy has ruined quite a few dates.
‘I choose the restaurant, I open the door myself, sometimes I’ll even pay the bill. I need to learn to let a man be a gentleman. That must be one reason why I’m single.’
This phenomenon is linked to age. If you’re single and in your 30s, you are bound to be rather independent, and organising your whole life means that you are not good at letting someone else take charge.
Our generation was told by our mothers that we didn’t have to be reliant on a man, and shouldn’t be afraid of making ourselves heard to get ahead in our careers. But have we gone too far the other way and become harsh?
A quick survey of my family — who seemed more than happy to point out my flaws — revealed that I frown when I think people are saying daft things. I also talk too quickly, too loudly, jump into people’s sentences, so even when I’m agreeing with them, I sound intimidating. And I can’t keep quiet whenever a ‘smart Alec’ comment springs to mind.
With that list, I was no longer surprised that I was single, but baffled that anyone had ever wanted to go out with me in the first place. So I made a resolution — to ditch the snippiness and see if my love life and friendships improved as a result.
It wasn’t going to be easy, especially as biting my tongue and playing nice has never been my strong point.
One former boyfriend drove me crazy by never rinsing off the soapsuds after doing the washing up, so our food always tasted of Fairy Liquid. Should I have let that slide, or always done the washing up myself, rather than trying to get him to do it differently?
I thought he was ignoring my pleas for him to do the washing up more thoroughly; he thought I was nagging, and while it wasn’t the reason the relationship ended, it didn’t help. I tried out my new resolution with some friends at a pub quiz where one of the questions was ‘Which Olympics was Chariots of Fire set in?’
‘I think it was the 1924 one,’ I suggested, having seen it recently.
‘No, it’s 1920,’ insisted one of the guys, a friend of a friend who I hadn’t met before. ‘Definitely.’
Previously, I would have stood my ground, but this time, I let it go. I assumed a Zen-like calm, even when I was right.
‘Don’t worry, it doesn’t matter!’ I said cheerfully, when before I would have made some ‘maybe listen to me next time?’ comment. He even bought me a drink to apologise.
I practised talking more slowly and with a softer voice. I found that it was impossible to finish a sentence this way without being interrupted, as people were used to me talking 19 to the dozen.
But I refrained from interrupting anyone and nearly combusted with biting back all the ‘smart’ comments that constantly bubbled up. It felt like the episode of Friends when Chandler has to stop making jokes and nearly explodes. But forcing myself to ignore everything which irritated me made me feel much more relaxed, I smiled more than I frowned, and I was a much nicer person to be with.
While the new, nice, me worked like a charm on my friends, the ultimate test would be how it panned out on a date.
After a meal in an Italian restaurant with a man I’d met through an online dating site, the bill — which we’d already agreed to split — arrived. My date carefully explained to me how £60 into two makes £30 each.
I bit back the smart ‘Thanks, I think even I could have worked that one out!’ remark which was on the tip of my tongue. Instead, I gave him a warm smile and a polite thank you. And in return? He asked me on a second date. I might be onto something.
Nigel Farage savages the EU again
Good to see him in top form again after his air crash. I personally think Britain should be in NAFTA, not the EU
ESM is doomed before it starts
Legal Challenges in Ireland and Germany
Estonia Justice Says it will not fit their constitution
Finns and Dutch have broken agreement made in the middle of the night
Perhaps the little countries do not have a say at all anymore
Crisis is unsolvable
Math results show up Britain’s junky government schools
The ‘shocking’ failure of comprehensive schools to nurture bright pupils is exposed today in a global league table of maths skills.
Teenagers in England were placed 26th out of the 34 counties who achieved the top grade in a respected international test.
Just 1.7 per cent of English 15-year-olds achieved the highest mark – compared with 7.8 per cent in Switzerland, the best-performing European country, and 26.6 per cent in Shanghai, China.
Almost all of England’s top performers attended private schools or state grammars.
Our dismal showing was condemned as an indictment of the failure to nurture ‘gifted and talented’ children at comprehensive schools.
Professor Alan Smithers of Buckingham University, who compiled the figures, warned that provision in England for able pupils was ‘a mess’ and urged an overhaul including the revival of some academic selection, but at 14 instead of 11.
He said that Labour’s drive to encourage schools to identify bright pupils had been so ‘confusing’ that some heads gave 100 per cent of children the label and others none.
‘In some cases, “gifted and talented” appears to have been more of a rationing device for popular trips than a means of high-level education,’ he added.
Professor Smithers, working with Dr Pamela Robinson on behalf of the Sutton Trust education charity, analysed the results of international tests in maths and reading set in 2009 by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
In England, 10,350 pupils sat the maths test, 6.3 per cent of whom attended private schools. Just 1.7 per cent scored the highest grade – a majority of them fee-paying.
England trailed the Czech and Slovak Republics, with 3.2 per cent and 3.6 per cent respectively, as well as Estonia, Poland, Hungary and Luxembourg.
Taking the top two grades together, just 10 per cent in England achieved them, against 50 per cent in Shanghai. This provided further evidence England was ‘a long way off the pace in educating the highly able in maths’, according to the research.
In 2006, English pupils who gained the top level in maths were placed 18th out of the 30 countries sitting the test.
Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust, said the latest results showed that most able children had been failed by a ‘hotch-potch of abandoned initiatives and unclear priorities’.
‘These are shocking findings that raise profound concerns about how well we support our most academically able pupils, from non-privileged backgrounds,’ he said.
Professor Smithers called for the top 5 or 10 per cent of pupils at age 11 to be tracked through school and for high schools to be held accountable for their progress.
Government targets currently focus on the weakest and middling performers, he warned.
‘It is assumed these brainboxes will look after themselves but they show up rather badly against pupils from other countries,’ he said.
Education Secretary Michael Gove said: ‘This report underlines why the Government is determined to act decisively to restore academic rigour to schools and ensure our exams match the world’s best.
‘Until we do this, our young people will continue to pay the price for the previous Labour government’s decision that lower standards were a price worth paying for higher grades.’
Every 11-year-old in Britain will be tested on grammar and punctuation
Every 11-year-old in the country is to be tested on their grammar and punctuation skills. The new exam in May could also include a check on the neatness of handwriting. The initiative is aimed at preparing children for tougher GCSEs which will put a stronger emphasis on spelling, punctuation and grammar.
Primary pupils will be questioned on tenses, subordinate clauses, parts of speech and the correct use of ‘I’ and ‘me’. They will also be expected to use commas and apostrophes correctly, avoiding the so-called ‘greengrocer’s apostrophe’ where apples and pears are wrongly written as apple’s and pear’s.
The hour-long exam will be taken alongside a reading and maths test as part of primary school SATs. It replaces a writing test which required pupils to compose extended passages but was unpopular among teachers who claimed marking was wildly inconsistent.
Teachers will instead give pupils a grade on composition, based on their work throughout the year, which will be combined with results in the new test.
It is thought to be the first time pupils have faced a specific national test in spelling, grammar, punctuation and possibly handwriting, although some will have tackled similar questions as part of 11-plus exams.
The brightest pupils will sit a tougher, separate test which may include some extended writing. Sample questions show it is likely to cover the correct use of semi-colons as well as personal and impersonal forms.
Ministers will decide whether to include handwriting in both tests later in the year.
In a leaflet for parents explaining the new test, officials said the test would encourage primary schools to place a stronger focus on the teaching of grammar, spelling and punctuation than in previous years.
‘Changes are also being made to GCSEs so that from 2013 there will be marks awarded for spelling, punctuation and grammar in key subjects.
‘By developing confidence in these skills early on, your child will improve their chances of succeeding in important qualifications later on in their education.’
However some schools are already threatening to boycott the new test claiming it will narrow their curriculum.
Members of the National Association of Head Teachers, along with the National Union of Teachers, boycotted all national tests days after the 2010 election and have warned they could repeat the action
Local warming (“4 times faster than average”) good for crabs and the birds that eat them
Scientists have shown that climate change has resulted in winners as well as losers with a study revealing that lesser black-backed gulls are booming in the North Sea.
The warming water has created an abundance of swimming crabs that are picked off by the greedy gulls. The experts have identified that the arrival of a new warm water species – Henslow’s swimming crab, Polybius henslowii – might by an important crustacean in the cycle.
It spends more time swimming at the surface that any other species, and the crab has colonised the North Sea as it has warmed by 1 degree C since the mid 1980s. That level of warming is four times faster than the global average.
The scientists, led by Dr Richard Kirby from Plymouth University, have shown that an increase in crab larvae in the plankton is followed the next year by an increase in adult crabs.
And three to four years later there is an increase in the numbers of breeding pairs of lesser black-backed gulls that feed upon the crabs. This time period is the same as it takes for chicks of the gulls to reach maturity and start to breed.
Sweeping British speech laws ban even atheist posters
Nobody must be offended by anything in Britain
POLICE have this afternoon issued a statement to clarify their position over a Boston pensioner who has vowed to display a poster labelling religions as ‘fairy stories’.
Officers say that they have not told John Richards he is committing an offence for displaying the poster but said he could only face arrest if he causes offence and refuses to take the poster down when they ask.
In a statement Lincolnshire Police said the 1986 Public Order Act states that a person is guilty of an offence if they display a sign which is threatening or abusive or insulting with the intent to provoke violence or which may cause another person harassment, alarm or distress.
The statement adds: “This is balanced with a right to free speech and the key point is that the offence is committed if it is deemed that a reasonable person would find the content insulting.
“If a complaint is received by the police in relation to a sign displayed in a person’s window, an officer would attend and make a reasoned judgement about whether an offence had been committed under the Act.
“In the majority of cases where it was considered that an offence had been committed, the action taken by the officer would be to issue words of advice and request that the sign be removed.
“Only if this request were refused might an arrest be necessary.
The Muslim teenager who ‘insulted six dead soldiers on Facebook’ appears in British court charged with ‘gross offense’
He’d probably be within the law in the USA but Britain is different. In this case I don’t think I’m too cut up about it though. Why does Britain let these charmers into their country?
A teenager appeared in court yesterday charged with making offensive comments on Facebook about the deaths of six British soldiers.
Azhar Ahmed, 19, has been accused of committing an offence under the Communications Act of sending a ‘grossly offensive’ message.
At an earlier he pleaded not guilty to the charge and was due to stand trial at Huddersfield Magistrates Court yesterday.
Ahmed is alleged to have posted the insulting Facebook message on his profile page on 8 March – two days after the soldiers were killed in an explosion in Afghanistan.
Ahmed walked into court wearing a cap and with a white woollen hoodie pulled up over this head.
The District Judge heard no evidence and adjourned the trial until 14 September due to an unexpected legal problem. Ahmed, of Ravensthorpe, West Yorkshire, was released on bail.