Colin, not Neil, turned up from Possum to adjust the new controls on the chair to be more patient friendly. He did a good job and then looked at the bed controls, which we call Trivids. One of them only worked intermittently and there can be nothing more frightening than hitting an alarm button and not knowing whether or not it was transmitting to the receiver. He adjusted the faulty ‘Trifid’ and I shall only know if it is working properly when I go to bed tonight.
He then turned his attention to the chair controls. These were a little more complicated so as they work only after pressing a large red button – Velcroed to the palm of my right hand. It works following a voice command – Up or Down. The beauty of this particular control is that I can use it when ‘my lovely’ is not in the room and I wish to adjust the height of the chair. In the past I was able to operate the chair through the hand held control unit. It was only when I found that my fingers are simply not strong enough to press the finger size buttons that I dreamt up this new idea that, thank goodness seems to work reasonably well.
I started off this entry by mentioning that there is nothing more frightening than pressing an alarm button and getting no response. Whilst touching on this subject of ‘frightening’ I should mention that I have lost my confidence in the carers in getting me from my bed into the commode/shower chair. Readers will recall that some weeks ago we were forced to switch from the standing hoist to the swinging cradle. On the whole we moved through the transition fairly smoothly. It is only in the past week or so that I have become frightened, not so much with the swinging cradle but more with getting me into it. I have developed a fear of falling, either sideways or of the bed altogether. I believe this has come about as I have lost control of my upper body that the carers, at least some of them, do not seem to understand why I have suddenly become extremely nervous when we approach this part of getting up. I had resolved the problem for the time being by introducing the respirator part way through. If I’m getting an adequate supply of air I seem to be able to relax and go through the procedure in a calm and relaxed manner.
I don’t think that anyone who has not become physically incapable of controlling his/her body can possibly imagine how a patient who has not shown any indication of nervousness, in the past, should suddenly find themselves having to deal with that patient and, in doing so, adapt their own physical approach to attempt to ensure that that patient was not being terrorised by the way he/she was being handled.
One way over this problem would be, so far as possible, to have the same carers, in whom the patient has confidence and not, as things are at present, having no knowledge of who will be coming to attend to until they actually arrive. I have been trying to get this message across to Ross nursing for over one month now and it is time for a showdown on this particular issue. In every other way and nothing to complain about. In fact, quite the opposite, I would have no hesitation in recommending this agency to others.
I may have a small problem with my carers but compare that with the problem facing the Prime Minister in trying to effect an acceptable changes in the various departments without rocking the boat too much with his Liberal coalition partners. One brave soul sat down and wrote to Mr Cameron with his own solution. Click here to read it.