Relatives of dementia patients at Solihull Hospital fear the axe is set to fall on a specialist ward as health chiefs review the way care is provided for those suffering the terrible illness.
One carer told The Solihull News she’d been told Ward 10 is earmarked for closure, though a hospital spokesman stressed no decision has been taken. She added: “We are in active conversations with the Clinical Commissioning Group and other interested parties about improving dementia care moving forward, though no decisions have been made.
Carol Parkes, whose 88-year-old father Ronald Holloway spent 10 weeks on Ward 10 before he died, praised the facility’s ‘outstanding’ care and described losing the 13-bed facility as appalling.
“It would be absolutely criminal,” the 56-year-old Marston Green resident said. “My father received superb care and the staff are absolutely amazing.
“People with dementia need specialised care.
“We watched my father deteriorate on other wards because they just don’t get the same type of specialised care.
“My fear is that if Ward 10 closes, dementia patients will be pushed onto an ordinary ward.
“They have put a lot of effort into Ward 10 to make it a safe environment for dementia sufferers and it would be such a shame to see it go.
“Patients are allowed to walk around freely because the ward has been designed that way.
“On an ordinary ward, most of the time patients would have to lie in bed.
“Every hospital should have a Ward 10.
“This is an area the hospital should be investing in, there are so many people with dementia these days and they should be putting these facilities everywhere.”
Ronald spent 10 weeks on the ward at the end of last year.
It was his second time there, following a stint earlier in the year. The hospital spokesperson said: “We are committed to providing patients with safe, good quality and sustainable services.
“As the needs of our patients change and clinical practice continues to develop and improve, we regularly consider all of the options available to us to continue delivering the safest and best care possible as per national directive.
“We are in active conversations with the Clinical Commissioning Group and other interested parties about improving dementia care moving forward, though no decisions have been made.
“We are pleased that relatives and others have been complimentary and happy with the care provision and our expert staff certainly pull out all the stops to offer the best support and ongoing management of the condition.”