Disability dilemma

Keith McGregor with the swivel chair'Staff photo
Keith McGregor with the swivel chair'Staff photo

A MONTROSE man this week claimed he has lost a vital care service after being given a disability aid to make his life easier.

Keith McGregor has limited mobility and cannot bend as a result of a back operation, which means that caring properly for his feet is extremely difficult. After a referral last year by his GP to Angus Council’s social work and health department, he was allocated support whereby a care worker visited twice a week to wash his feet and ensure they were in a healthy condition.

But Mr McGregor said that support has been withdrawn after it was noticed he had been given a swivel chair, after an assessment at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, to help him get in and out of the shower.

He said: “The home care team felt that because I got that chair I could manage the maintenance of my feet myself, and withdrew the service.

“It is a great thing, and has made a huge difference, but what they haven’t taken into account is that while I can now get my feet wet I still can’t bend down to wash and maintain them. It hasn’t solved the problem but the service was suddenly stopped.

“I was told by the care manager that they couldn’t continue as it wasn’t practical, but I’d be assessed for washing aids to help me. I’ve tried those before and they don’t really work.”

A council spokeswoman said that services are routinely changed depending on the needs of service users.

She said: “We don’t discuss individual service users or their circumstances, but when a person requires care, we carry out an assessment of their needs and provide the appropriate care and/or equipment. Our usual process is to visit service users and discuss any changes with them.

“The situation is reviewed after a number of weeks or earlier where appropriate so that we may respond to the changing needs of the service user. We try at all times to find ways to enable people to be as independent as possible, but for those who are assessed as requiring additional support, this is provided for them.”