Talk by Mark Hazelwood held on Wednesday 14th November 2001

Questions about:-

Holmhill & Leuchie

Letter recently sent from National Office to all branches clarifying services offered at 2 holiday respite centres. Different establishments in how they are registered and what they aim to provide. Leuchie is registered as a Nursing Home with Health Board. It is geared up and equipped and staffed for people who have high level of medical dependency. Holmhill is registered as a Residential Establishment with the Local Council and is not able to provide people with the high level of care needed by those who need nursing care, e.g. people with pressure sores, swallowing difficulties, requiring night time assistance etc. People therefore not always able to be as well cared for at Holmhill. The criteria for admissions has been changed to ensure people going can be appropriately and safely looked after. Difficult situation as may no longer be possible for some people who have formerly gone to Holmhill to holiday there again. Unable to “upgrade” Holmhill to level required for Nursing homes, e.g. Law states Nursing Home must have en-suite facilities in all bedrooms and Holmhill quite an old building. Holmhill does not provide 24 hour qualified nursing staff (Registered General Nurses). There is not adequate provision throughout Scotland for respite and holiday facilities.

Benefit System

Lots of problems at the moment. Aiming to do some campaigning work on trying to improve the system. Policy is set by Westminster so will have to work with colleagues south of the border. Current system is rigid and inflexible and doesn’t cope well with conditions that are variable.

Ambitions for the future

  • Raise the Profile of the Public Understanding of MS

  • A National Programme of Self Management Training

  • Specialist Nursing in Every Health Board

  • Beta Interferon available to all who would benefit from it.

  • A National Standard of Care with no more uncertainty about what people can expect from their Local Authority.

  • Local Authorities Beginning to Deliver the Services People Need

  • Better Respite Services