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MP calls for ‘compassion’ in elderly care
1:00pm Monday 21st January 2013 in News
RELATIVES find it “almost impossible” to find care home places for those without dementia, Banbury MP Sir Tony Baldry has said.
The Conservative – whose constituency includes Banbury and Bicester – spoke during a House of Commons debate.
He said that 30 years ago, nursing homes were “mostly full of spry widows in their 70s”. He said: “But it’s now impossible to get into a nursing home or residential care home in my constituency, unless one is suffering from severe Alzheimer’s or dementia.
“As a consequence, many more people with mild dementia are now living at home in the community, being looked after by carers.”
More care assistants are needed in hospitals, nursing homes and to support people who live at home, he told the debate.
But he warned some GPs appeared unwilling to diagnose dementia, because they did not know what services to offer sufferers. He said: “I have little fear of death – death at the worst can be eternal darkness – but I have a total fear of getting dementia.”
And he referred to the “tragic” case of Welsh MP Ann Clwyd, who last month said her late husband suffered “indifference and contempt” from nurses.
Sir Tony said: “We must get compassion back into the NHS.”