Chestnut Court Care Home Case Studies

This is the Case study of Barbara Sayers by her Son and Daughter in Law

My mum Barbara has been at Chestnut Court since March 2017, we are very happy with how well she has settled and she has just celebrated her 100th birthday.  We didn’t think we would get to the point where mum is settled and living near us especially after the journey we went on.

Mum was always a stubborn independent lady; I think it had something to do with living in London during the war. Mum had her first hip replacement when she was 92 years following an accident where she slipped on the ice one morning outside her house and broke a hip.

Breaking her hip didn’t stop her going back to her home in Bromley where she lived alone. Once home, she carried on without any support, even still getting on the bus to go shopping and refusing to use a shopping trolley because “that’s for old people”.

Living in Lymington we would try and get to see mum as often as we could but most of our contact was done by phone. It was on one of the occasions I called mum but didn’t get an answer we were obviously very concerned and soon learnt mum had suffered another fall and fractured her other hip, this was at the age of 96.

This is when our journey really began! I was very disappointed with the administration of mum’s discharge; I didn’t know they were planning to send her to respite until the day of her discharge whilst visiting her in Hospital

After my mother’s respite care was ending a meeting was held which we attended with mum and many professionals. They asked mum what she wanted to do and she said she wanted to go home. Mum lived in an old house, it didn’t have any central heating and had steps leading down to her dining room and her kitchen, no fridge/freezer and the toilet was upstairs. Mum was to receive carers at home but we needed to make sure the house was as safe as possible and purchased necessary equipment for the carers.

The first night mum was discharged from hospital we stayed in a hotel in London so we could be closer to her and received a call later that evening after we left at 5pm from the Carers stating they could not gain access as mum had locked the door from the inside and they left. When we got there next morning and looked through the letterbox, we could see mum lying on the floor, she had fallen and been there all night, she had broken her wrist and was hypothermic, we were told she had been very lucky to have survived. From her fall in November 2016 and subsequent hospital attendances appears to have brought on her Dementia.

We had another meeting with professionals at the Hospital who stated that my mother could go home again, and she would be well looked after. My wife and I were shocked that such a decision could be made after what had just happened with my mother having fallen again less than 24 hours after being home. We were insistent that my mother would go into a Care Home and that we would pay for it, but even so they tried to say everything would be OK.

We wanted mum nearer to us and started to look for homes which would be able to accommodate her and her needs. We viewed reports on the CQC website, picked a few and visited without making an appointment. Whilst some of these homes were very nice they either lacked the homeliness mum was used to or they were far too expensive.

“We turned up at Chestnut Court and we went in despite not being overly impressed with the outside”. We are so glad we did because what we saw and felt inside was a world away from our first impressions and we knew mum would be able to call Chestnut Court her home.

We met Becky the Registered Manager she couldn’t have been more helpful, she sorted everything for us, including the transport to get mum from Hospital to New Milton, she goes the extra mile.

I have nothing but praise for Becky, recently mum was in hospital and whilst Becky was visiting her own mum in hospital she took the time to visit mine. Becky organised mums 100th birthday celebration, arranging the entertainment,100s of balloons stuck to the ceiling in the Lounge, decorating her room and photographs taken by the local paper. Becky has framed the photo for mum, she goes above the call of duty.

Mum continues to amaze us in how independent and strong she is, she has been unwell several times and we have even been told to fear the worst by the GP and Becky but the very next day she was sitting up eating porridge!

We have met the owner Mr. Kumar he is a very nice man. We have recommended Chestnut Court to several people, we tell them not to be put off by the front door because it doesn’t reflect what’s inside. Since mum has moved in we have not turned back and have no regrets.

 (Picture is for the Case study Below)

Below is the Case study for one of our residents at by her Daughter but they wish to remain Anonymous  (Picture Above)

Mum has been at Chestnut Court a year now having spent a period of time in hospital and another care home. Mum was always a happy bubbly sociable person but sadly when my father died 7 years ago I could see a gradual decline in her health and her personality. I think some of it was loneliness, mum and dad had moved into sheltered housing but once dad passed mum was on her own. Some people who live in sheltered housing now are still going out to work fulltime.

More and more I could see mum going downhill, but being the independent person she was she was resistant to care at home but we did eventually get mum to agree to a cleaner who eventually started to support mum with her personal care needs. Mum started to lose weight so we arranged “meals on wheels” but mum wouldn’t eat them, they were good meals and the people who delivered them were very nice but they couldn’t stop to chat and make sure she ate the meals. We then moved to “care at home”, again we noticed whilst the carers were very kind they were timed limited and didn’t have the time to make sure mum was eating and drinking properly and chat which is what she needed. It wasn’t working and mum kept falling, I can’t remember the number of admissions to hospital we had. I remember visiting mum at home one time when she had been assisted by home carers into bed to just get inside my door and receive a call to say she had fallen again, it was tiring and exhausting.

Mum was adamant she didn’t want to go into a home but did agree to go into respite until she was stronger to go home. The home was recommended by some friends of ours but they didn’t have a ground floor room which is what we needed. This home was not right for mum; she didn’t like it there and showed her frustration of restrictions placed on her through her behaviour which was so out of character for her. I was taken aback by this because I had never seen my mum behave in such a way. I knew I had to do something and find an alternative home and Chestnut Court could not have been so different but right for mum.

I asked around, looked on line and had a useful discussion with my hairdresser, who I know goes into care homes. I also read reviews, how homes are rated and scored and found those looked much of a muchness. Most importantly mum needed an en-suite ground floor room. The hairdresser recommended I visit Chestnut Court, I called and it was just pure luck they had a ground floor room. I visited with my husband and immediately felt the difference; the atmosphere was lovely and still is. We brought mum in to have lunch with the other residents, she seemed to like it. We were told we could personalise mums room and we did with her belongings, arranging her room like her room at home. This helped with the transition from the other home.

The care staff and Becky are really good; the food is good and the chef even comes out to speak to the residents to get feedback on the meal he has just cooked.   The activities are really good. Mum recently enjoyed the visit from the farm and the events put on at Christmas, Easter and Chinese New Year.

Mum has been unwell a few times since being at Chestnut Court but I can’t fault how they have supported and responded to mums needs. On one occasion mum needed to go into hospital Becky buttered-up the ambulance crew to take mum to Lymington Hospital, sending a member of staff with her, when I got there mum was already tucked up in bed on a ward. It couldn’t have been so different from previous occasions when mum was in the other home and had been sent off to hospital on her own and left waiting for me to turn up.   Mum looks younger than she did a couple of years ago, she is well cared for and I think she is content.

Becky is very helpful and supportive, mum likes to go out and wanted to go out for bread and milk at 7pm in the evening the other day, Becky took her. They didn’t get bread and milk but they came back with chocolate eclairs and toffees for everyone.

I am happy and relieved we have found Chestnut Court; I know I can go on holiday knowing she will be well cared for.