Heart patient says follow-up lacking

Dunedin man Clifford Rodger is disgusted at the lack of follow-up support after his discharge from hospital. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
Dunedin man Clifford Rodger is disgusted at the lack of follow-up support after his discharge from hospital. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
An elderly man discharged from Dunedin Hospital last week says the lack of follow-up support for him at home is ''crazy''.

Clifford Rodger, who had a heart attack a month ago, broke down in tears yesterday describing the lack of support since his discharge a week ago.

Mr Rodger (86), of Dunedin, has declined Southern District Health Board's offer of one hour's housework a week, saying it was not enough and did not include essentials such as clothes washing.

He needed about three hours a week for about three weeks, after which he felt he could cope again without support.

''Once I get back on my feet I can manage myself.''

He said a hospital specialist had said he should receive all the home help he needed, and must avoid exerting himself.

Yesterday, his kitchen was full of dirty dishes, and he said he would have to use all of his clean dishes and cutlery.

He had been told home support did not include clothes washing, which he could not understand.

The system was nothing like it was a few years ago when he needed and received appropriate support.

Now it was a ''crazy'' system, and was surely adversely affecting many older people, he said.

Southern District Health Board communications director Steve Addison said there appeared to have been a ''misunderstanding''.

The board would work with Mr Rodger to resolve the situation.

Govt cutting funds at the expense of lives

My Mother in Auckland receives more home help than that and she is nowhere near as in need of help as this man.

The Government needs to be held to account for their gross underfunding of services outside of Auckland and Christchurch.

It's time all of us in these regions stood up, and put our foot down.  Remember these things come the election!


How sad!

This poor man! That is terrible, I would help him!  I hope he has been set up with support systems that can help him now.

Heart patient

This is terrible. The poor man.

I am prepared to help out for an hour a few times each week after work.

I can do dishes or laundry etc.

In the weekend I could help out by doing some housework.

I'm sure there are other people out there who could help too.  

Heart patient aftercare

I feel so sorry for this gentleman. What is NZ coming to. That an elderly patient can be sent home without aftercare.

He has probably worked all his life and now that he is in his twilight years he deserves better than this. Why couldn't the hospital's social workers arrange for one of the charities to lend a hand.

I suffer congestive heart failure, life can be very difficult at times. I'm lucky I have my husband and some family. I couldn't imiagane trying to live alone and without help. That's not what New Zealand is supposed to be about.

Someone please ring the Sallies they will get some help for him.


After-care not as good as it could be

The cardio ward staff were great, but yes, follow up does seem to be a bit substandard. 

Seven months after a heart-attack I'm still waiting to be given an appointment time for my six monthly check-up with a specialist. More miscommunication?

Another thing that badly let the after-care down was that no one checked that I could actually afford the essential drugs needed after being discharged. As it happened I could, but I know people for whom an unexpected $50 bill would not necessarily be affordable. 

Lack of support following heart attack

I am appalled at the lack of follow up support for this 86 year old man who was discharged from Hospital last week following a heart attack. One hour of help a week is certainly not enough and I think he should have at least one hour a day until he is strong enough to care for himself.


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