(I took this story off my diary pages as it was rather long)

Sunday, 28 April 2002. I must be a sad and lonely soul to relate this little story - but, here goes! (and nobody laugh - bear with me - there is a moral point).
I am in sheltered housing and most people get a call each morning (to see if they're alive?). After the visit to
the hospital, where I was given the impression that I could drop dead any minute, I decided that I had better have a morning call.
Since then the calls have been spasmodic. Relating this to the neighbours, I was told that I was called, but that I could not remember it. As I have been saying that I have primary senile dementia I thought that it could be possible - but, I did nor really believe it!
This morning I heard my next door neighbour called, but I wasn't. Waited for five minutes, then pulled the cord and explained the above points. I was told that the man was on site, using the call system, and that I should have been called and that they would contact him.
Five minutes later he called as though it was a normal morning call. When I asked him why my call had been missed he went into an explanation of how he had to go away and do calls at other sites, and got very angry. (he was lying) I persisted, and asked why he had left without calling me and had come back just to call me. Oh, boy! Did he get wound up. Wish I had recorded it! After a few exchanges I told him to get back into his pram. The man was obviously emotionally unstable.
My moral point is that how does a person of such personality get to work with vulnerable people?
Should I make a formal complaint? To be honest, I just can't be bothered. But, it does give me a story to tell and maybe Basildon Careline will visit the site!
Monday, 29 April 2002. Didn't get a call again this morning. Though it's an ill wind ........... I slept in until 9am and thoroughly enjoyed it! First time for about four weeks. I used to be a very late riser, but since the glucose has been under control I have more energy (manic!!??).
Tuesday, 06 May 2002. Above - Sunday 28th. April and Monday 29th - I relate the story of not getting my morning, "Are you OK." intercom call from Basildon Careline. On the Monday, after I complained, yet again, I got a phone call explaining that, "There was confusion as to whether you should get a call." As I had given the warden a letter over two months previously, I could not accept his explanation. I was on-line at the time of the call, so the BT answer service picked up the call -
it is here. I called Careline back on the intercom system, and the call is here. You will note that at no time did anyone say, "Sorry." The intercom replies seem patronising - "Just pacify the doddering old fool." Which is born out by the lack of action.
Basildon Careline have recently won an award - wonder what the rest are like!!
In case you think I have 'gone over the top'. Let me put this to you. I did not want a call for my benefit. I was thinking of the person who would find the body after I had been laying dead for a week. In recent times, this has happened when call services have made mistakes and the tabloids have had an excellent circulation booster.


I spent some twenty years in management services which involved internal audit of systems (I am a Fellow of the Institute). On checking the matter with the warden, I saw the system used. A more fallible system I have never seen! It is my professional judgement, that on the evidence that I have seen, that there is a potentially FATAL flaw in the system of adding residents to the call sheets and the following through of the sheets.

I have sent an email to the manager of Basildon Careline, drawing her attention to this diary page. I have used this approach as I have no confidence in the usual methods. It may be said , "You have to put all complaints in writing." If that is so, why was I not told that, when it was agreed to get the manager to confirm my complaints in writing?

But, these entries are now the 'Sword of Damocles', in that it would be devastating if a failure did occur in the future and they were used as evidence. These pages also eventually get onto most search engines.
Wednesday, 08 May 2002. The Careline problem has been resolved. As we are finding out, and accepting, these days, it is not an individual's fault that causes a problem. It is usually a 'system error'. Recently there have been the instances of rail crashes and medical errors that, when analysed, show that the systems do not 'fail safe'. This is what happened here and plans have been made to avoid a similar occurrence.
Tuesday, 14 May 2002. I had a visit today from the manager of Basildon Careline, and we went through the steps used to enter a resident into the call system. It is a manual system and relies on carrying forward manually recorded information. Not an easy system for which to set up a formal procedures manual. We left it for her to talk through the problem with her staff and the warden. I, for my part, am happy in the way the matter has been resolved.
Wednesday, 15 May 2002. Had a chat with the warden today about the Careline problem. We managed to come to a few conclusions and develop a better way to manage the 'no call' list. Took me back a while to when I was at work - and I was good at it!