Fam­ily’s anger as fa­ther, 92, is left ly­ing in shower

HEALTH: Daugh­ter says Crail aban­doned by health and so­cial care ser­vices

The Courier & Advertiser (Dundee Edition) - - NEWS - CHERYL PEE­BLES

The fam­ily of a 92-year-old man have hit out at health chiefs af­ter he was left ly­ing cold, shocked and bruised on the floor of his shower af­ter a fall.

James Mac­Don­ald, of Crail, slipped as he was tak­ing his morn­ing shower and was un­able to get up.

His home carer found him around 45 min­utes later and raised the alarm.

How­ever, when his daugh­ter called an­other 45 min­utes later to find out why help had not ar­rived, she said she was told it had been di­verted to an­other call in Kirk­caldy.

Jen­nifer Gowans called rel­a­tives from work to go and lift her fa­ther, and she and her sis­ter cov­ered him with tow­els to keep him warm as he lay in the bath­tub.

Fife Health and So­cial Care Part­ner­ship in­sisted its re­spon­der was only rerouted when the re­quest for help was can­celled.

But Jen­nifer de­scribed his treat­ment as shock­ing.

She said: “I was told they were sit­u­ated in Glen­rothes and had taken an­other call to go to Kirk­caldy.

“This was al­ready far too long and an un­ac­cept­able wait for a frail 92-year-old gen­tle­man.

“I man­aged to rally two strong mem­bers of our fam­ily to leave work and help lift my fa­ther safely.”

Jen­nifer said the com­mu­nity of Crail, in the east­ern cor­ner of Fife, felt aban­doned by health and so­cial care ser­vices.

Her fa­ther’s case has been high­lighted as an ex­am­ple of al­leged dis­crim­i­na­tion against peo­ple in the vil­lage.

Lo­cals will face a trip of al­most an hour to see a doc­tor out-of-hours if pro­pos­als by Fife Health and So­cial Care Part­ner­ship are ap­proved.

Crail Com­mu­nity Coun­cil told Fife Health and So­cial Part­ner­ship direc­tor Michael Kel­let of Mr Mac­Don­ald’s or­deal as it ob­jected to the planned re­moval of the pri­mary care emer­gency ser­vice from St An­drews Com­mu­nity Hospi­tal.

Com­mu­nity coun­cil mem­ber Heather Aird said: “Peo­ple in Crail strongly feel they are be­ing dis­crim­i­nated against and not be­ing de­liv­ered an ad­e­quate ser­vice as they are not re­ceiv­ing a ser­vice in the north-east.”

Part­ner­ship Care at Home man­ager Paula Ed­mon­ston said: “The care and safety of peo­ple at home is our num­ber one pri­or­ity.

“Our mo­bile emer­gency care team is based in Rothe­say House, Glen­rothes, and on duty 24 hours a day cov­er­ing the whole of Fife.

“The re­sponse time for mo­bile emer­gency care is usu­ally around 45 min­utes.

“This de­pends on vol­ume of calls, traf­fic and lo­ca­tion of the call. All calls are treated by pri­or­ity of need.

“Mr Mac­Don­ald’s home carer ac­ti­vated his com­mu­nity alarm on June 12 at 9.46am and the mo­bile emer­gency carer was dis­patched.

“At 10.30am the com­mu­nity alarm was ac­ti­vated again to can­cel the re­quest for a mo­bile emer­gency carer to at­tend and as a re­sult the carer was con­tacted and rerouted to an­other call.

“It’s un­for­tu­nate that on this oc­ca­sion Mr Mac­Don­ald’s fam­ily feel the ser­vice has let them down.

“If Mr Mac­Don­ald or his fam­ily have any out­stand­ing is­sues with the com­mu­nity alarm ser­vice, we would ask them to get in touch with us to dis­cuss.”

“Lo­cal peo­ple strongly feel they are be­ing dis­crim­i­nated against and not be­ing de­liv­ered an ad­e­quate ser­vice

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