Task 1 A
It is the responsibility of every health professional to provide high quality services to patients regardless of their social, cultural, religious, or economic backgrounds. Every patient should receive quality healthcare services without prejudice. Hill croft nursing homes are located in East London with the main goal of providing the best and latest health care services to all patients with different nursing requirements. Nurses and care assistants are distributed among all the five nursing homes, and these dedicated professionals are committed to providing friendly, warm, and homely atmosphere to all patients regardless of their backgrounds. It guiding principle is to provide highest quality service possible to all patients, and the nursing home has always been pursuing its objective of improving its service quality day in day out. However, just like it is the case with most of the health care units all over the world, Hill Croft nursing homes have been faced with a scandal that has caused both abuse and self-harm among the service users. This paper aims to review the review the issue as well as identify other modern time scenarios that can be related to the scenario at Hill Croft Nursing Home.
It is ironical that many patients all over the world go through great suffering in the hands of health professionals, who are expected to provide comfort and help these patients from languishes. Such a phenomenon is evident in Hill Croft Nursing Homes, where estimated eight patients suffered in the hands of four health professionals of the renowned nursing home. The eight patients included seven men and one woman and were between the ages of seventy and eighty. All the eight patients are said to have suffered from dementia, and these medics had mocked and bullied the patients as their assumption was that the patients would not be able to remember the abuses out because of the old age. These patients were also pelted with bean bags. One of a man’s feet was nearly tipped out of a wheelchair while the other was deliberately stamped on. All the four medics are accused in jail, and the ruling judge attribute the same as an indictment to the managers of the homes. This is because it has been found that the management was aware of the existence of some evil behaviors among the staffs. However, the management did not put in place adequate mechanisms that would address such vices. The cases were earlier reported to the managers but then the managers decided there was no adequate evidence that would warrant suspension of the four medics. However, the home suspended the medics but this was not mentioned to any concerned bodies that visited the facilities. The medics were later reinstated until the intervention of the court that ordered the arrests. Families to the victims were very touched, and most expressed their concerns over the ingratitude of the nursing home. All of them expressed their distress towards the home that was supposed to look after the patients. Much of guilt engraved the families of the families for trusting strangers to care those family members. They also expressed resentment after the learning of betrayal of the total trust that was given to a nursing home (BBC 10 January 2014, p. 1).
The health condition of an individual is a key factor that can make an individual vulnerable to abuse and self-harm. For instance, some people exhibit mental disorders resulting from stress and depression as well as other genetic related issues. From the case scenario of the Hill Croft nursing home, all the eight patients are believed to have suffered from varied mental disorders. This makes the nurses to mistreat the patients since they believed that these patients would not be able to recall the abuses because of poor memory. Age is also a key central factor that contributes to abuse and self-harm. Old age is associated with senility. People who are in their old ages have a high tendency of losing their memories. From the above case, the ages of the eight victims are said to lie between seventy and eighty years. The four professionals have taken the advantage of this factor in order to mistreat the patients.
There are several risk factors that would have contributed to patients being subjected to abuse and self-harm. These would include social, cultural, economic, and political factors. For instance, from the Hill Craft Nursing Home scenario cultural factors as well as social factors may have led to the mistreatment subjected towards the involved patients. The patients could have suffered abuse on the basis of discrimination by the medics. These patients could also have come from poor backgrounds. In most cases and especially in the modern times, people who come from families with poor backgrounds are ill-treated in many places to include health care centers. On the contrary, the elites receive high quality healthcare services as well as respect from the healthcare professionals.
Task 1 B
Many social and cultural factors have contributed to the increased cases of both abuse and self-harm in the health care facilities. Such factors have impacted negatively on the health care sector eventually inflicting hardships on the patients. Poverty has been prevalent in many parts of the world. Many people in these countries are living below the poverty lines and as such they cannot be able to cater for their medical bills. There a wide financial gap that is created by the financial difference between the rich and the poor. The biggest proportion of the population comprises of people who are less advantaged. In the modern society, poor people are likely to receive low quality healthcare services in the health care centers. They are also given little attention unlike the elite and the rich of the society who are pampered and treated with much care. In ability to cater for medical bills as well as the cold treatment that such poor people receive from the medics may continuously impact negatively on those patients. They will experience self-pity that may eventually lead into stress and depression. As a result of depression, such patients may also opt to turn into drug abuse out of frustrations and dismays.
Education is another factor that has impacts on both abuse and self-harm. Emerging technologies have contributed to the lives of many people in both positive and negative ways. Technology has provided a platform through the internet where individuals can carry out research. Instead of going to hospitals for examination and treatment some people have opted to do research over the internet in order to establish whatever they could be suffering from. Based on the symptoms, a knowledgeable individual can acquire relevant information via search engines such as ‘google.’ However, all information provided on the internet is not genuine and hence can be misleading. Such individuals may find information that may not address their illnesses. At other times, the results, without a medical examination, can be misleading. The person doing the ‘internet search’ may become stressed up especially if the results are not appealing. He/she may end up in drug abuse and at times even commit suicide.
Segregation and discrimination are prevalent in the modern times, and it is practiced in many countries all across the world. Immigrants and minority groups have been the ones who have felt the effects of discrimination. In the workplaces, public places, social places, as well as health care centers discrimination has been the order of the day. Some of the groups have been treated as the ‘inferior’ groups while others are perceived as being a ‘superior’ groups. Those people coming from the superior groups receive the high quality education eventually securing the best job opportunities both in the public and private sectors. This is not in the exclusion of the health care centers. The financially weak as well as those coming from the ‘inferior cultures’ experience increased cases of discrimination in health care centers. They have received poor quality treatments compared to those patients coming from the ‘superior cultures’ of the majority groups. Discrimination is a social vice and leads into depression and self-pity as an individual considers him/her ‘inferior.’ He/she is likely to spend much time contemplating over the reasons that may have made him/her receive cold treatment from the medics. He is thus likely to develop issues of depression and antisocial personality disorders. This may not only lead to mental disorders but rather suicidal cases. People are likely to find no value or essence of living if at all what they receive is cold treatment and as such they will opt to take away their lives.
Some religions have banned their followers from receiving medical treatment from healthcare centers. They believe in a supreme being that provides protection and cure to all ailments and as such no one will be allowed to visit a hospital for medication. Such religions will not even allow taking of pain killers implying that victims will suffer languish from severe pains. As a result of such afflictions, such victims are likely to develop stress as well as get emotional. They are likely going to suffer from depression as well as grow weak physically.
The world, today, has been filled with people who are concerned with only their own individual interests and self-oriented benefits at the expense of others. Innocent people, and especially children, have been subjected to unthinkable hardships that leave them psychologically or physically handicapped, and sometimes even claim their innocent lives. At times, these cases have gone unnoticed thereby depriving such victims of their rights and freedoms. However, in some cases, offences of such forms and magnitude have been identified but the worst thing is that the culprits go unpunished. The relevant agencies have failed in one way or the other, and it is because of such ignorance and failure that vulnerable groups are subject to abuse in the hands of those believed and trusted to protect them. The Daniel Pelka’s case is an issue that has attracted increased public concerns for lack of multidisciplinary action against those behind his murder. This is in spite of the fact that the names of these murderers have been brought to book and the media has been very effective in covering all the hardships that Daniel went through prior to his murder. This paper is going to focus on the unthinkable killing of the innocent four year old boy whose killing rests upon her mother’s hands together with his stepfather.
It is unfortunate that Daniel went for days under starvation and torture and later beaten to death by his mother together with his stepfather. The bad side of it is that no action has been taken against the involved professionals. However, both parents have been jailed for thirty years, each, for the infliction they both caused to the innocent boy. Prior to his death, innocent boy had been suffering in silence for a relatively long period, and police had come to his protection over various attempted murders. In the school, he is said to have shown distress, starvation, and his weight was only eleven kilograms prior to his death. His mother was a drunkard, and he used to come in with different lovers and fell into violent rows and police had intervened for a total of 27 times to help the situations, during the short life of Daniel Pelka. During the last days prior to his demise, Daniel is said to resemble and an old man, as he was feeble, wearing sunken eyes, depressed, and always scavenged for food in the school bins and sandpit. It is during such observations that the teachers raised concern to the school head teacher, but the head teacher did nothing over the situation. It was also reported that Daniel’s suffering was ‘invisible’ to officials in Coventry. These officials did not speak to the police regarding the hardships that Daniel was passing through and that eventually sent him to the grave. The boy is said to have been held in a bath until he passed out.
There has been legislation that have been put in place such as those that address issues of liberty and children protection against abuse. It is the role of different professionals, under their capacities, to protect the interest of the vulnerable groups and especially the juveniles. All involved professionals should extend their services and intercommunicate whenever there is a suspect of any abuse subjected towards the vulnerable group. In Daniel’s case, most of the professionals who could be considered to be essential fail in their duties. First, the police fail to save Daniel’s life despite the fact that they have been called into the house for over 27 seven times prior to his death (Robinson 2013, p. 2). Under their skills and capacities, they ought to have suspected such sufferings after inspecting the house that constituted the small, smelly box where Daniel’s unkempt mattress lay. Secondly, the officials at Coventry failed in their duties as they did not notify the police regarding what the small boy was going through. Third, is Daniel’s head teacher who was ignorant and neglected to intervene even after teachers had raised concern over the issue. Finally, experts indicated Daniel’s broken arms as being mere accidents, something that some of his teachers bought into. It is a case that is filled with sympathy even after realizing that practitioners, even with skills and professionalism, could not suspect the unthinkable would happen.
It is the role of all concerned professionals to intervene whenever they suspect an abuse being subjected towards a vulnerable person. For instance, from the above case, officials from Coventry ought to have informed the police in advance about Daniel’s sufferings. The police would then take the necessary actions of persecuting the parents and such would have prevented the killing. The head teacher needs to have alerted children’s affairs agencies who would also intervene and employ the necessary mechanisms in saving the life of Daniel.
Health care organizations develop new policies and strategies on a regular basis when deemed necessary. They could also amend the existing policies depending on the situation that needs to be addressed. As a social care worker, it is necessary to have knowledge of such policies and strategies. In East London, these strategies have been applicable on a day to day basis in order to ensure that patients are provided with appropriate and quality health care services. The following have been put in place to minimize cases of abuse. First is confidence, a key central factor in ensuring the privacy of a patient’s information is guaranteed. The health care sector has realized the importance of this provision and as such has put all possible mechanisms of privacy and security existence and growth. Most of the information shared between doctors and their patients is considered important to be kept confidential. Some of the such information touches on very private issues and hence its leak to the public would cause discomfort among the concerned parties. At times, it is also not advisable for the medics to share such information with their colleague doctors and patient’s family members unless the information is considered necessary in the medication process. For instance, if such information leaks into the public there are high chances of causing emotional discomfort to the patient especially if the information is considered too private.
The health sector in East London has also put strict mechanisms that aim at reduction of issues related to discrimination and segregation projected towards a certain group or community. It is believed that all people are equal regardless of their backgrounds and hence should receive equal health care attention. People should not be divided within ethnic borders or on the basis of skin color. The health sector has realized that segregation and discrimination are key contributors to depression that is dehumanizing both physically and psychologically. As such there has been a dire need to put in place mechanisms and policies that fight against any form of discrimination directed towards the patients (Thornicroft 2011, p. 89).
Because of the increased costs of living, some people have found it difficult and barely impossible to finance their medical bills. They have languished and suffered severe pains in their beds because of lack of finances. This is a major social concern that aggravates both the physical and psychological health of the patients. As such, the government together with the healthcare centers have come together and devised mechanisms such as health care insurance covers that would help reduce cost burdens and depression cases inflicted on the less advantaged of the society.
All the above mentioned strategies have been very effective in addressing cases related to abuse, as well as self-harm. Many people are confident and willing to share information with their doctors because of assured and guaranteed information privacy and security. People are also able to live in peace and harmony when they are treated equally. Reduction and total eradication of discrimination have enabled people to develop a spirit of love towards each other. Insurance policies have made healthcare services accessible to many people in the society.
However, the above strategies can be said to be exhaustive in addressing abuse related issues. Education and improved trainings have to be put in place in order to ensure that medics and other health care professionals are well equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills to help them offer quality services to patients. Such will make these professionals become well versed in applying all the above mentioned abuse-control strategies.
Health care services rank among the most basic facilities that an individual require in his/her life. On the other hand, a society without justice can be said to be a ‘doomed’ one. Many people all over the world are subjects of medical hardships. Some vulnerable individuals, especially children, have suffered cases of injustices in the hands of those people trusted to care of these little ones. In this essay, I have looked onto issues related to abuse and self-harm in both cases that have proved instances of injustices at some point. I have laid important emphasis on the case scenario at Hill Craft Nursing Homes and the unfortunate demise of the innocent Daniel Pelka. In both cases, I have tried to show how the relevant parties have failed to address the injustices that face the victims in the two case scenarios. For instance, the top management in Hill Croft Nursing Homes was not able to counter face the afflictions that were subjected towards the ten patients. Despite the fact that the management knew of such issues, it ignored them until the government steps in. Likewise, in Daniel’s case, there is failed the contribution by the relevant authorities to address the ill treatment the boy is subjected to during his short life. I have organized the work in a concise and orderly manner and as such can be used by authorities deemed important to address cases of injustices and child abuse.
The purpose of writing of compiling this report has been to meet my academic requirements. However, this is not a limitation as the report can be used by large external authorities in order to create awareness amongst themselves and predict on the ‘unthinkable’ so as to use the necessary mechanisms to prevent last minute rush. For instance, if such a report was accessed by the involved professionals in the case of Daniel, then it would have been possible to save the life of a little boy.
Based on the above information, it is my feeling that as a fresh graduate I will be able to secure my position as a social care worker. I have highlighted key issues negatively affecting the modern society and as such I stand a better chance of securing a position in order to ensure that my opinions are put into application. However, this is subject to the top management’s discussion and their stand. It is upon the role and mandate of the management to warrant my appointment.
BBC 2014, ‘Hillcroft nursing home staff sentenced for resident abuse ,’ 10 January, p. 1.
Robinson, M, 2013, Everyone to blame but no one punished: Teachers, doctors, the police and social workers escape justice after missing 27 chances to save tragic Daniel Pelka, Viewed 22 May 2014, http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2423264/Four-year-old-Daniel-Pelka-beaten-starved-death-invisible-authorities-missed-chance-chance-save-report-finds.html
Thornicroft, G, 2011, Oxford textbook of community mental health, Oxford, Oxford University Press.