Flawed ‘care’ for the mentally ill

One wonders whether the public are aware of what is happening in Care Homes for the Mentally Ill these days?

I have been informed by a Care Worker who works in a Care Home for the Mentally Ill in East Sussex that C.P.N. Social Workers make the decisions which of them they will remove from the Care Home, and have re-housed in a “Self Care House” without regard to the state of mind of that person or his or her needs. One supposes it is all to save money, but one wonders whether it does?

The visit of the C.P.N. is all very friendly, telling them how much better off they will be. After three or four visits it becomes very evident that they do not wish to leave the Care Home, which is after all the only home they know. Their desire to stay, where they feel secure and cared for 24 hours a day, is understandable but is totally ignored by the C.P.N. I am told threats are made to stop their benefits.

Often many are taken to as many as five houses to induce them in taking residence in one of them. Despite their initial refusal to leave they cave in reluctantly to these bullying tactics.

I was astonished to be told by this Care Worker that in one incident, as a result of the method used by one dominant social worker, one male resident became so frightened, that from being just a nervous young man, he became a total wreck having facial spasms and moving in a jerky manner.

I am told that if he was re-housed, he would have no idea how he would be able to look after himself. His hygiene would certainly be neglected. He would unlikely change his clothes, forget to take his medication, and eat unsuitable food and eat regularly. Such is the obvious need for 24 hour care.

Unfortunately, it seems from what I have come to learn, social workers only ever interview a resident when they are at their best in the day, not when at one or two in the morning when they often go out walking, regardless of the weather conditions, be prey to being mugged or beaten, and frequently are only brought back by the staff on duty after the police have been called.

It must surely be common sense that safety for both the residents and the public must be paramount, rather than social workers endeavouring to reach their targets. This total disregard for these very vulnerable people, and their welfare need, must surely be investigated at the highest level.

Cllr Granville Bantick