Disgust after Knuzden woman’s care funding is refused
12:21pm Wednesday 11th April 2012 in Blackburn
THE family of a woman paralysed from the neck down are appealing against a decision by health bosses to refuse funding for her continuing care.
The children and husband of Jean Hannon, who was left paralysed following an operation last August, said they were ‘appalled and disgusted’ by a decision by NHS East Lancashire not to grant the family funding for her continued care.
And now a health scrutiny boss has vowed to highlight the family’s plight.
Jean’s husband Terry, 72, who is registered disabled and relies on a mobility scooter and stairlift, said he is left to care for his wife and do the cooking, cleaning, washing and ironing despite his own health issues.
The couple, of Knuzden Brook, Knuzden, had to get rid of their furniture to make way for a medical bed, hoist and wheel-chair in their living room.
Son Terry, 52, of Kingsley Close, Blackburn, said: “My mum was discharged from the Royal Blackburn Hospital a week ago after eight months in hospital. We had a meeting prior to that with the PCT and they told us she wasn’t eligible for funding towards her care.
“My mum can’t move a muscle and the only help she and my dad are getting are carers coming in to turn her over every four hours and change her dressing every day.
“They say she doesn’t qualify for funding because she doesn’t need medical care.
“My dad loves my mum to bits. They’ve been married 52 years and she’s his life. To see her like this is heart breaking for him.”
Daughter Tracey Ainsworth, 47, of Elm Tree Grove, Brockhall Village, described the situation as ‘a joke’. She said: “They don’t want her in hospital because she’s bed blocking.
“My mum has no means of calling for help and my dad is terrified to leave her alone. She can’t use a phone.”
Jean was admitted back into hospital on Easter Sunday due to deteriorating health.
Husband Terry said: “We told them she wasn’t fit to come home but we felt like we had no choice.”
A spokesperson from NHS East Lancashire said: “We are unable to comment on individual cases.
“NHS East Lancashire follows the National Framework for Continuing Health Care as directed by the Department of Health. The framework includes a clear pathway to assess a patient’s eligibility for Conti-nuing Health Care funding.”
Labour Councillor Ronald O’Keefe, Chair of Blackburn with Darwen Council’s Health Scrutiny Committee, which is currently responsible for evaluating NHS services, said he would contest the family’s case with the head of social services.