TV star Fiona Phillips expresses agony over dementia drugs following father’s death

CONCERN Fiona Phillips
CONCERN Fiona Phillips
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ANGUISHED TV presenter Fiona Phillips claims dementia drugs could have contributed towards the death of her father.

Ms Phillips said her father Neville, who lived in Portsmouth and suffered from Alzheimer’s disease, was put on a mixture of medication after being placed in a specialist dementia care home.

But the former GMTV star said her father’s condition deteriorated before he died after contracting pneumonia earlier this month. He was 77.

She said in today’s Daily Mirror: ‘I am so angry at the way my lovely, lovely dad was treated at the end. In his final weeks he was so coshed by drugs that his poor body couldn’t cope.

‘Without the powerful drugs they used to sedate him he could have had another few years.

‘Maybe I’m being selfish because he wouldn’t have wanted to continue to be dependent on others. But that wasn’t a decision to be made by the medical system on his behalf.

‘Then they robbed him of his life. That is what is keeping me awake at night now, it’s the anger.’

‘He’d put on weight from the drugs and his hair was white. “Oh dad,” I said, “What have they done to you?” and I broke down in tears. But there was no response, he was totally out of it.

‘His body had been clobbered with drugs.’

Ms Phillips was a carer for her father and officially opened the Carers Centre in Orchard Road, Southsea, in 2009, as reported by The News.

She previously travelled to the city once a week from her London home to care for him.

Speaking in 2009, she said: ‘When my dad became ill with Alzheimer’s I moved him to Portsmouth from Pembrokeshire in west Wales to be near me.

‘The care couldn’t have been more brilliant. I am lucky I have a husband and children but there are so many people who don’t have anyone and this (the Carers Centre) is a real release for them.

‘You don’t know where to turn and the last thing you think about is getting support for yourself. As a carer you have to realise you have to take care of yourself, otherwise you will become ill.’