Letter – No air conditioning in Bishop Tyrell not acceptable

I wish to write a response in regards to the Bishop Tyrrell Place air conditioning system failure.

I spend a week every Christmas visiting with my father who is a resident of Bishop Tyrrell Place as he has Alzheimers. The staff at Bishop are always very good with the residents.

I travel from Sydney. I was visiting my dad on December 27, 2017 and was totally disgusted by the heat in the facility that these residents were having to endure as the air conditioning had failed. All the windows and doors that were able to be opened were opened by the staff, trying to get some air into the building.

The staff members were trying their very best to keep residents cool. At this time his shirt was sticking to him and had sweat rolling down his face due to the heat of the day.

When I got there my dad was very unsettled. I gave him some water; my dad is unable to get his own drink as he is in a wheelchair and he would not even remember to drink.

I took my father outside as the room was just so hot and uncomfortable. I took him out the front of Bishop Tyrrell and sat in the shade of building which was cooler.

I went and spoke to nursing staff regarding the air conditioning and spoke with the RN on duty.

Later I sent an email to the director of care at Bishop Tyrrell and also my contact that I had previously dealt with from Newcastle Anglican Care.

I then received a phone call from Newcastle who advised they would arrange portable air conditioners to be sent from another site. This did not happen as they were all in operation at the other site.

If I had not been there to see this myself I would be none the wiser as Anglican Care had not called to advise any of the residents’ family members that there was an issue.

I posted on Facebook to advise the residents’ families that this was happening and we need to contact Anglican Care Newcastle to put pressure on them to fix this issue as an emergency.

These are our elderly parents and grandparents and they need to be comfortable at all times.

Venessa Valdezate, Sydney