Monday, June 13, 2011

Not moving or handling

While the cuts continue to bite and Social Services and the NHS avoid talking to us (apart from a letter from our elected cabinet councillor telling us they're now going to charge for the few services they are continuing with), we have rather more practical problems to deal with.

Some weeks ago our sons track hoist broke - not a disaster, he didn't fall or anything - the control wire got trapped and pulled it out of the control unit, and it just stopped. So we rang 'Loan Store' to see about a repair - and that's where the problems started. They rang up the firm who rang us - to tell us we didn't have one of their track hoists. But we do - it has their name on it, serial number etc.. It seems someone has lost our record off the system - haven't worked out if it's Loan Store or the company.

Meanwhile, we have a broken track hoist and (officially) no way to get our son in and out of his wheelchair downstairs. Simple mindedly, you'd think this was an emergency (or at least urgent) - but it's now 3 weeks and no action apparent. urgent is obviously a relative term.

You'll note I said (officially). Because as a carer you get used to this sort of thing and over time, get quite proficient at 'stop gapping'. (Fortunately) we had a spare control (salvaged from an old track hoist) that we used to get it working with a bit of (unofficial) soldering. It's almost certainly against the rules and if it goes wrong we'll almost certainly get shouted at, but when you can't move a disabled person at all and the official idea of urgency runs to months, there really isn't much alternative.

We have now replaced the (unofficial) working unit with the broken one, just in case the menders turn up - but I'm not holding my breath. If I did, I'd be long dead of asphyxiation - and I wouldn't have the breath to shout down the phone for them to get their fingers out.


  1. Thank goodness you have DIY skills. I can't believe that you have been left in this situation for so long.

    Do please let me know how you get on.

    All the best,


  2. Afraid this is fairly normal. Complained to x3 separate sources to put pressure on and helpful physio eventually got them to deliver a replacement part. As we were out (no prior phone call) the part was left hanging on our front door handle (terraced house) - fortunately a helpful neighbour took it in and gave it to us on our return.