A selection of some of this week's letters to The Buteman.
Thomson Court disappointment
Sir, – I write to express my bitter disappointment about the vote to close Thomson Court Dementia Day Centre.
The care that this resource provides is essential for our community.
Its closure could have serious detrimental effects on the psychological and physical wellbeing of those who have been thriving as a result of the focused care it offers.
The Dementia Care Centre was designed to help those in the more advanced stages of the illness and their families. It is an area of respite. It is a ‘safe house’ with a sensory room, a memory room and highly trained staff to ensure the patients are extremely well cared for.
It has also has a quiet room which helps relax patients and relieve anxiety.
Anxiety is commonly seen in those with dementia.
Despite their advanced dementia, patients at the Thomson Court gain enormous benefit from the social interaction and group activities provided there.
The day centre also allows the family of these patients to get essential respite themselves. Imagine providing 24-hour care to a loved one who sometimes wanders at night without fear of danger, who leaves the gas stove on after trying to make dinner, who needs help with most activities of daily living.
Without this service these caring families will suffer.
Because of the respite it provides it also allows some patients to stay at home with their loved ones for longer and often delays the need for residential care.
An alternative ‘befriender’ service does not have the ability to provide the depth and level of care that Thomson Court can provide to our community. – Yours, etc.,
Dr Kate Canavan
GP at The Bute Practice
Big cash boost for Yorkhill Hospital
Sir, – I would like to thank everyone yet again for their amazing support in helping me raise as much money as possible for Yorkhill Hospital sensory department in memory of Savannah McGeorge, who sadly lost her life at the age of four on May 22, this year, at Yorkhill Hospital.
I did a raffle called Savannah’s big raffle.
Savannah had her first seizure at five weeks old and was diagnosed with Ohtahara Syndrome a week later. Shauna, her mum, was told with the complications of uncontrollable seizures and lung and feeding difficulties her life expectancy was two years.
But she kept fighting and would have been five in November. Savannah was a twin – she was first born and followed by her little sister Sorchah.
I was so overwhelmed with all the raffle prizes that were donated on and off the island. And also a big thank-you to Jim McAlister for the donation of a signed Blackpool FC top and to John Gilmour for his help in getting this.
Big thanks go to Tommy at the Golfers Bar for helping sell tickets, to Apple Tree Nursery, and to everyone who bought tickets or gave a donation. The total going to the sensory department at Yorkhill is an amazing £720 .
I would like to thank you all again. – Yours, etc.,
Bryce Avenue, Rothesay
Savings today, costly in future
Sir, – Re the Thomson Court day centre closure, I can’t believe this is happening to a service that has been held in such high esteem by various organisations which are expert across the field in the care of people with Dementia (Stirling University, Alzheimer’s Scotland) and, also, by Argyll and Bute Council which presented the staff of Thomson Court with a Civic Reception in honour of their service to the people of Bute.
I believe it was our very own Councillor Len Scoullar who made the presentation that day while standing beside the very staff who are now threatened with redundancy.
This valued professional and accountable service provider is to be replaced by volunteer befrienders. With the best will in the world, this is never going to be a like-for-like replacement, but I am sure the short-sighted decision-makers will certainly see it as a cost saver.
However all they are doing is deferring the current savings (if any!) to a greater cost in the future. – Yours, etc.,
Elma Fisher, retired Unit Manager of Thomson Court
Pride in Team GB’s success
Sir, – After team Great Britain has achieved it’s best Olympic result in over a century, we can all take pride in our country’s almost unbelievable medal haul and sporting prowess. Out of the entire world our country has come second.
I would like to pass on my congratulations and thanks to all of team GB for showing that once again Great Britain is a world beater when our United Kingdom works together as one. – Yours, etc.,