19 November, 2022

Family 'horrified' after malnourished 69yo relative admitted to hospital despite having in-home carers


This is a situation that I have a real disgust and anger over. Elderly abuse and negligence, it’s more common than people care to realise. This is heartbreaking reading this article and for me it is very triggering. Having lost a family member due to negligence and starved to death in a NSW public hospital where he should not have been in the first place other than a short trip for an X-ray. 

You have no idea of fear in old age; until you are there let me tell you. And having an elderly relative killed  by the public health system several years ago still haunts me and angers me.  He was in a top private nursing home, but had a trip to a public hospital for an X-ray and never left. His food and medicine withdrawn without family consent, no communication from the hospital despite us keeping phoning  we had no knowledge that there was such a thing as a medical advocate and no one even volunteered that information to us.  Three weeks later he was dead, he wasn’t ill he was old. He needed assistance with eating but as I said,  was in a private nursing home where he was getting the care needed. Even the nursing home was denied any news on him once in hospital. I find that rather odd to be honest.  It was the public hospital in NSW that killed him. There is no way on earth they did not know his medical history because nursing homes have to let hospitals know what medication a person is on and current health status. 

But why when a person is only there for an X-ray are they then detained for three weeks on starvation and withdrawal of medication? You tell me! No the issue wasn’t pushed by the family and I had no say in it. Angry? You bet your arse I am angry, and disempowered as was this relative. I can only imagine the fear that he must have had and no one to protect him. 

Don’t ever trust the system with elderly or disabled loved ones, they have a track record of negligence putting it mildly. Watch you loved ones like a hawk and be there when they are having their meals in hospital because sometimes they are not getting help to eat like our family member. 

I can tell you also when you are in your late 50’s onwards the public health system is not as enthusiastic about your health. Everything is put down to you getting old. I know because I am experiencing this at present. If you are under private health care things are different. You are a drain on public health as you age. Women especially are treated off hand, just talk to older women using the public health system and learn what to expect if you are not assertive enough. This is happening world wide over the past thirty years that I know of.  Pay you tax until you retire and then you are no longer useful, that is what this modern world is all about. But make no mistake, when you get old it could be you this happens to. 

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