Call for stroke victims to receive more help
The husband of a former care home worker whose life was turned upside down when she suffered a stroke today told of her battle to recover.
James Rosarti, of Pound Green Close, Shipdham, described how his wife Claire had suffered mental health problems as a result of her stroke and said she had very little energy.
It comes as a survey showed more than one third of patients recovering from strokes feel 'abandoned' after being discharged from hospital.
The survey was presented by the Stroke Association, who are calling for the government to produce a new stroke strategy, as their current plan ends in 2017.
Mrs Rosarti was watching EastEnders at home when she suffered the stroke. She was taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, where she was stabilised and discharged five days later.
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But Mr Rosarti, who suffers from ME, claimed his wife was discharged without a care plan, a fate shared by 35pc of stroke survivors, according to the Stroke Association's survey.
The stroke also caused her to develop depression and psychosis later on, Mr Rosarti said.
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'Claire should have had at least a care plan ready for her when she left hospital,' he said. 'It does feel like she has been abandoned.'
Jon Barrick, chief executive of the Stroke Association, said: 'Major strides have been made in the way stroke is treated in hospital; however the same is not true when stroke survivors return home.'
A spokesman for Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital said: 'We are sorry to hear that Mrs R was not happy with her aftercare following a stroke.
'We recognise that patients are often left with long-term problems resulting from the injury to their brain following a stroke which can make it difficult to cope with everyday life.
'That is why patients are offered a follow up appointment about six months after their initial hospital stay we would always encourage patients to attend those appointments or contact us if they need to rearrange.
'We feel that Mrs R would have benefitted from attending the appointment which was offered as it is designed to assess the patient's health and social care needs.
'In recent years, we have really focused on modernising our stroke service to become the regional leader, with a big emphasis on providing life-saving early treatment for local patients through an emergency stroke service running 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
'The local authority, public health and the NHS have also been working together in Norfolk to look at the longer term pathway for supporting patients and this partnership working includes the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.'
A Department of Health spokesman said: 'Nice (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) have developed guidelines for social care so that staff and providers have clear standards, and we expect them to be followed.'
Have you got a story about strokes? Email health correspondent Nicholas Carding at firstname.lastname@example.org