The Drugs Don't Work - Sanitorium in the UK
July 15, 2014 3:16 PM   Subscribe

Does anyone have any recommendations or knowledge of convalescent homes in the UK? My brother has just undergone some seriously brutal radiotherapy and cancer treatment for throat cancer. He's been out of the hospital for a few weeks and is now at my parents, but it looks like it could be a very slow road to recovery. He currently can't eat or drink, is very nauseous, at risk of dehydration all the time.

I was wondering if there was anywhere like a recovery centre, a convalescent hospital, an old fashioned sanatorium kind of place where someone who was very ill but not ill enough to be in hospital could go? In victorian times he would have been shipped off the the spa for 6 months, that's what he needs more than anything. The place doesn't need to be old fashioned! I'm just not sure what takes the place of a sanatorium in these modern times.

He needs a break from life for a good few weeks, with access to medical care (although he may not need it) and some sympathetic staff who have seen this kind of thing before.
If there were other cancer survivors in there it would be even better.

Any suggestions, no matter how vague or off the wall would be really really welcome at this point.
posted by stevedawg to Health & Fitness (6 answers total)
Have you or your brother been put in touch with Macmillan? They're generally a good point of contact for all local respite care / support options. One of its local groups oversees the Grove Hotel in Bournemouth, which isn't quite what you're looking for, but it's an example of what they do.
posted by holgate at 3:29 PM on July 15, 2014 [1 favorite]

I can't speak for the UK, but individuals who are not geriatric-aged, but need the support of staff around the clock, can also be treated at US nursing homes. While I think we often think of them as "old folk's homes" they can provide great support for a person in recovery from a serious illness or surgery. i know somebody who stayed at one following a serious heart operation. I would imagine you could find similar practices overseas.
posted by gilsonal at 5:22 PM on July 15, 2014

Your brother would benefit from a convalescent facility with some medical staff to monitor his progress. His doctor should be able to provide some names. Nurses might be even more knowledgeable.
posted by Cranberry at 11:25 PM on July 15, 2014

Does he need actual nursing care? If so, a care home with nursing is what he wants. The better ones are very expensive, and those in preferable locations usually have long waiting lists. Is he eligible for any funding at all, through either the NHS or local authority? Most nursing homes also have residential floors for people without need of nursing care, these are way cheaper and the nurses are there if you need them. A lot of such places, not all by any means, are grim and depressing.

If he doesn't need actual nursing care, has he considered renting a cottage or something for a few months? He could employ a care assistant through an agency to check on him, cook and clean twice a day. Some such agencies employ nurses as well, or he could be added to the district nurse's roster if necessary. That's what I'd do, but I'm a loner.
posted by goo at 12:55 AM on July 16, 2014

A duty social worker working with adults or maybe physical disbility even in his locale may be able to offer a list of respite options, but be prepared for a lot of stress, bureaucracy, being pushed from pillar to post etc etc Nthig Macmillan nurses or calling relevant charities in his locale.
posted by tanktop at 1:30 AM on July 16, 2014 [1 favorite]

UK here. When my mother had a hip operation and due to complications wasn't ready for going home, she went to a care home on the NHS which had her own room but live in staff, provided meals and physio visits (as her problems were fitness/exercise based).

This was from Gloucester Royal Hospital so it might be worth making a fuss about getting a similar facility!
posted by Wysawyg at 5:25 AM on July 16, 2014 [1 favorite]

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