Stardust Silverwobbit cast a critical eye over her outfit – head to this side, head to that – pink suspenders? No, not tonight. She ditched the pink suspenders. A giggle ruffled the back of her nose as she ferreted about in various boxes, coming up with a latex corset (matching knickers), some black fishnet gloves and a contraption that emitted an eerie light from somewhere around her navel. She made another inspection – head to that side, head to this – ok, good to go, let’s hit the clubs. ‘You alright there, Dad?’ she called up the stairs. There was … Continue reading Stardust, Sunshine, Leeds and LA
It’s a dreadful double whammy – people with Down’s are much more at risk of developing Alzheimer’s due to the extra strand of chromosome that causes Down’s in the first place. Better healthcare and support means many more people are living into older age (in the early 1900s, most didn’t survive beyond 12 years), enjoying more life opportunities than ever before – including acting, gigging, (check out Heavy Load – I knew several of them!) and hitting the clubs and festivals supported by friends, family, and the likes of Gig Buddies and the Stay Up Late campaign. But the tragedy … Continue reading Down’s Syndrome and Alzheimer’s Dementia
The older we get as a population, the more dementia is likely to affect us closely, either as the person who has it or as their carer, family, or friends. Health services have not always been geared to these long term, shifting, deteriorating, and often demoralising needs in which an individual loses the core of themselves and those around them, incrementally day by day, lose the person they love. Training is a key issue but exposure to the trajectory of dementia has usually been missing, leaving just the bare bones of clinic snapshots supplemented by text book descriptions and checklist facts. … Continue reading ‘Time for Dementia’, a Sussex Partnership medical training inititiative
This is an account of how, through multiple failures, misses, barren communications, and thoughtless expedience, one family’s parents seem to have died sooner than they should. The NHS was already struggling due to huge changes instituted by a government that I clearly remember promising us it would not make. The NHS, they said, has been through enough change and needs to settle. I don’t like to think what they really meant by change if this is consolidation. Then, and blame cannot be attributed to these immediate changes but perhaps to the impact of the constant tide of them, came the scandals … Continue reading When deaths ought not to be expected: the interdependency of couples & the inadequacies of health services
This was the Trust’s third R&D conference, a reflection of the key role research now plays in NHS activity and how recent this incorporation has been. Clinicians have always undertaken research and development, whether in response to highly focused problem solving for a specific issue or as a more speculative process out of which something entirely original was born. The difference now is that, rather than working alone with no formal structures by which to network for new skills and ideas, we are increasingly able to access the vast resources of university colleagues and they, in turn, are able to … Continue reading Sussex Partnership research conference
For a few months now, I’ve been conversing by phone and email with Dr Sanjeet Pakrasi who is a consultant psychiatrist in Newcastle. Sanjeet has put together a care service for people with dementia that I would like to see researched for adults with learning disabilities as it seems to have potential not just for improving care delivery but also reducing costs. At its root is a touchscreen and broadband connection between client, family (optional), and a care hub which gives people live and spontaneous access to recognisable others who are able to provide help and support. Increasingly, it is also offering entertainment … Continue reading So why Newcastle?