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MS sufferer left ‘disgusted’ with care firm’s help

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MULTIPLE sclerosis sufferer Lorraine Mansell says a care company is ‘disgusting’ after she was left without help.

The 56-year-old needs two carers to help her four times a day as her condition means she cannot walk or use her left arm.

The carers help her out of bed in the morning and make her breakfast, help at lunchtime, teatime, and get her to bed at 9pm,

But Mrs Mansell, of Harvard Close, Lee-on-the-Solent, said that company Apex Care – a private company contracted by Hampshire County Council – has let her down.

She said: ‘After two months of carers coming to see me too early or too late, I was assured things would improve.

‘The girls that come and care for me are faultless.

‘They say they are exhausted from such long days and have many homes to visit.’

Mrs Mansell uses a catheter, which needs to be emptied every few hours, as well as plenty of water to keep her well.

‘Two days after my assurance things went wrong,’ added Mrs Mansell.

‘I was given my lunch and a drink at lunchtime and was told my next visit would be at 4.45pm.

‘However no-one turned up, and at 5.30pm I was called to say no-one else would be coming for the rest of the day.

‘What Apex did was disgusting. I’m very vulnerable and I felt so let down.’

As Mrs Mansell’s catheter was not changed and she was not given more water, she developed a water infection.

Her family called the county council, which has now stepped and taken over her care.

Apex director Malcolm Patrick said that the company recognised it could not help all its clients and spoke to the county council.

He said: ‘The senior co-ordinator contacted all service users who had capacity and families to explain that Apex Care would no longer be providing care and had handed their package to adult services to ensure care was provided.

‘Two out of the three customers contacted were understanding and thanked us for advising them.

‘When Mrs Mansell was contacted she was unhappy and stated we had taken away her regular carers with whom she had built a relationship.

‘It was explained the reasons behind what we had done was to ensure care was provided and that we did not wish to let her down.

‘Mrs Mansell was also given the number for adult services and reassured that they would be providing her care from now on.’

Apex Care looks after 320 people in the county and its contract has been extended to July next year,

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council member for adult social care, said: ‘Very occasionally, when a provider is unable to deliver a service the council acts quickly.

‘Providers on our preferred provider panel have had their contracts extended for a short period pending a tendering process for providing care at home services.

‘This is important to ensure continuity of care for the people.’

 

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