Originally from Somalia, Mr AB is in his seventies and lives with his wife in an upstairs flat with a supportive family. Visiting his homeland, in 2015 he suffered a severe stroke and was admitted for hospital treatment. After discharge he remained in Somalia for eight months as he had high blood pressure meaning he was unable to fly.
When he returned home, his family were unable to cope and he was admitted to hospital for rehabilitation. After six-weeks he was discharged home under the care of the Community Resource Team. The physiotherapists advised that, due to the circumstances, he missed out on treatment that he should have received, and they had to work hard to enable further progress with his rehabilitation and recovery. Mr AB was well motivated, but hampered by having to stay in bed permanently. His limbs were becoming contracted and as it was unsafe for him to sit in an armchair, having to stay in bed was increasing feelings of loneliness and isolation.
A specialist hydro-lift chair was ordered by physiotherapists, which was very successful. He was able to sit safely in the chair and there was hope that in time, it would assist in enabling him to stand for transfers. However, the cost of the chair, £2,660, was beyond the reach of the family and had to be returned.
The physiotherapists’ assessment was that Mr AB’s recovery would be greatly enhanced by using the chair, if only for a few weeks. It was established that the hydro-lift chair could be hired for a six-week period for a fee of £666. After discussion between the Community Liaison Officer employed by Age Connects Cardiff and the Vale and a representative from the Stroke Association, both organisations contributed grants of £300 to cover this cost of the chair and provide Mr AB with the best possible chance of recovery. The family members contributed the remaining £66.
Once the chair had been delivered, an intensive rehabilitation programme was provided by physiotherapists and occupational therapists. Over the next six weeks, Mr AB’s tolerance and strength improved greatly, enabling safe and independent sitting and good balance and posture in his own armchair (raised to enable access using a steady).
Despite setbacks along the way, Mr AB has worked hard and made significant progress. The partnership between the Community Resources Team and the third sector through the temporary provision of the hydro-lift chair, has given him the opportunity to be able to sit with his family rather than being confined to the bedroom. In time, when he takes delivery of his powered wheelchair, it is hoped that Mr AB’s quality of life will be further improved by accessing local facilities.
Healthy, comfortable feet are essential, especially for older people and Age Connects Wales’ member organisations Nail Cutting Service has proved to be a revelation for thousands of older people this year. As we age, some people need assistance with cutting their toe/finger nails and arthritic joints and tough overgrown toenails can make wearing shoes and walking comfortably almost impossible.
Most of us do not really give a lot of consideration to having our nails cut, but if you are elderly, suffer from restricted movement, susceptible to infections or conditions such as diabetes, then our nail cutting service could be a very important aspect of your healthcare.
With a number of community based clinics operating across our member organisations areas of benefit, specially trained and insured staff and/or volunteers keep people out and about and on their feet. Drop in clinics are available in some areas, and if getting to a local clinic proves difficult, a home visit service is available.
Please note, this is a chargeable service and some medical exclusions apply. Charges currently vary across each member organisation, but you can expect to pay between £10 - £15 for a clinic appointment and £20 - £25 for a home visit. Our charges cover all expenses including single use instruments as advised by NHS Podiatry Services.
Prior to your first appointment, we will need to know about your general health and any medication that you are taking, so a short questionnaire will be necessary. If you have any health conditions which prevent us from assisting you, we will make a direct referral to the NHS Podiatry Service.
The benefits of maintaining good foot health is being felt by thousands of people across Wales each month, and the feedback we are receiving is highlighting that the service is helping older people to remain active, independent and reduce their risk of falls.
Never ignore minor foot problems as they could get worse. F or more information or to book an appointment, please contact your local Age Connects Organisation.