Patient highlights carers shortage

CANCER sufferer Lilian Body claims she has missed out on a vital radiotherapy session because her carers did not turn up to take her to hospital.Social services have told her that they were short staffed during one particular week of her treatment.

CANCER sufferer Lilian Body claims she has missed out on a vital radiotherapy session because her carers did not turn up to take her to hospital.

Social services have told her that they were short staffed during one particular week of her treatment.

And although her problems appear to have been sorted, the 68-year-old from Chantry wants to highlight the problem to stop other people suffering in the way that she has.

She said she will still have the same amount of radiotherapy sessions but it means they have started later.


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Diagnosed with cancer in June this year, Mrs Body also has long-term health problems and she is unable to walk properly.

Where possible friends and family have taken her to the hospital in previous years but are not always able.

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Her radiotherapy sessions are supposed to take place every weekday over a four-week period.

She said: "I was told that there would be a carer coming with me to the hospital on the Monday.

"But on the Monday the taxi came and went and the carer was not there."

Having called the duty social worker Mrs Body was told they had tried desperately until the last minute to get a carer for her – even though she claims she had already been told five days earlier that she would have a carer with her.

Mrs Body's care is given by a home care agency and a carer from another agency had to be found to take her and they are still taking her now.

Geoff Meech social care services manager at Suffolk County Council said there had been a problem that week with a number of carers being off sick.

He said: "We very much regret that due to ill health, a home carer was unable to accompany Mrs Body to a hospital appointment resulting in a missed appointment.

"We are extremely sorry that this has happened and we will make every effort to ensure this will not be repeated."

N Have you had a similar problem? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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