SIR — As a local GP I feel I must respond to your story on care for the elderly (Herts Advertiser, June 5). I understand and accept that the provision of care particularly at weekends has not met everyone s expectations but the vast majority of my patient
SIR - As a local GP I feel I must respond to your story on care for the elderly (Herts Advertiser, June 5). I understand and accept that the provision of care particularly at weekends has not met everyone's expectations but the vast majority of my patients who require it receive excellent care with which they are extremely satisfied and which meets their needs; sometimes exceeding them.
I can think particularly of one 98-year-old who died recently who had dedicated carers for many years who succeeded in keeping her out of hospital and who helped her cope with severe difficulties, often going the extra mile for her at their own expense.
This story is repeated time and time again and I think we need to support and praise the carers who work in such a dedicated and caring way. Supporta Care may not yet have provided completely satisfactory care across the board but they have an exceedingly difficult job to do and to describe them as not having "a brain between them" is both disingenuous and insulting. (The person quoted as saying this also claimed Raynaud's disease as a reason for needing care for her mother - a surprising claim, as Raynaud's disease is a common affliction among particularly women including my wife who has not found it stopped her bringing up four children and being a successful full-time primary school teacher).
Cllr Chris White's claim of a "serious breakdown right across the board" is excessive and unfounded - they majority of home care provided locally is good quality and most of those on the receiving end are completely satisfied. A handful of complaints should not be used to condemn the entire service.
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I was particularly concerned when one of my elderly patients, in response to your article, became exceedingly worried that she would be unable to stay at home at such time as she needs home care. I shall be reassuring her that there is an army of dedicated, hard-working carers in this city who will no doubt be delighted to help her when the time comes and will do so successfully and well. Let's hear it for the carers!
DR PHIL GRIFFIN,
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The Lodge Surgery,
Normandy Road, St Albans.