Saturday, 18 April 2020

Bridgeside Lodge Care Home






"Music can provide access even when no medication can; to movement, to speech, to life ... music is not a luxury, but a necessity." Oliver Sacks

My friend, Jane Glitre, runs the Spitz Charitable Trust.  We have known each other for thirty years, from the time we both travelled to war-torn Sarajevo. Today Jane finds herself in the middle of a new war.

 

Bridgeside Lodge Care Home in Islington,  London, is a wonderful place, confirmed by the home's support for the Spitz and their work with music for the residents. You can get a hint of this by watching this great video.


I visited Jane at the home two years ago and was hoping to go there regularly, but my own health problems got in the way of that.

 

Along with care homes across the country a number of Bridgeside residents have died from Coronavirus.  One of the latest victms was former Islington Labour Councillor, Wally Burgess, who died on 13th April, aged 79. Jane tells me that he enjoyed playing the piano at the music sessions.


Yesterday we learned that hospitals had run out of protective gowns. So what is the situation in care homes like Bridgeside?

 

Earlier this week The Daily Mail reported that, “Care home bosses have accused the Government of a 'shambolic' response to the sector's coronavirus crisis… Insiders said they were receiving only 'paltry' and 'haphazard' deliveries of essential items such as masks, gloves and aprons - mandatory for all healthcare workers."

 

One employee at Bridgeside told the Islington Gazette: “We still don’t have the right PPE, and Public Health England keep changing their guidance and using PPE based on what is available. It’s a bit of a mess and I think it’s too little too late, which is very sad. It’s very hard and it’s very upsetting.”

 

But don’t worry Health Secretary, Matt Hancock tells us: “I am deeply conscious that people in residential care are among the most vulnerable to coronavirus. We have already begun testing social care workers and will roll this out nationwide over the coming days … We will test all current care home residents with coronavirus symptoms and all new care home residents who are discharged from hospital into care.”

The sad news from Bridgeside gives the lie to that.

Meanwhile we learn that Matt Hancock accepted £32,000 from the chairman of a think-tank which wants to scrap the NHS and £5,000 from the director of a private nursing firm which supplies agency workers to the health service.

Jane tells me that, "when we are able to return to Bridgeside we will work with the staff, bringing music to every part of the building. It will be a part of the healing process for the staff, residents and grieving relatives. A place to reflect and pay tribute."

 

Clap for Bridgeside Care Home

 

Last word to Chunky Mark

 

 www.davidwilson.org.uk

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