Trudy Harrison has met with staff and volunteers at dozens of care homes and GP surgeries as part of a summer programme to better support the health and social care sector.
Prior to the Parliamentary recess, Trudy wrote to every residential care home and GP surgery in her Copeland constituency in a bid to understand the challenges and further support the many carers and doctors working in the area.
Last week Mrs Harrison visited St George’s Residential Care Home in Millom, Westcroft House Surgery in Egremont as well as Millfield Care Home in Keswick.
This month she will also be meeting staff at Bethany House and Bethshan Nursing Home in Whitehaven, Fellview Health Care centre and Wyndham Manor in Cleator Moor followed by Lapstone House in Millom.
Mrs Harrison, a former home carer said: “Throughout the Parliamentary recess I have been meeting with staff and volunteers at many of our local GP surgeries and care homes - working to better communicate the brilliant work of our health, medical and social care teams.
“Whilst this was a decision I made some time ago, it became a much more personal endeavour as earlier this month my father-in-law, Reg Harrison, very sadly passed away. Reg had been wonderfully cared for at Bethshan Residential Nursing Home in Whitehaven for nearly two years. Towards the end of Reg’s life, the Home took on a different, but equally vital role for our family, providing high quality, end of life care.
“Compassion, patience, professional competence and a consistent feeling that we were welcome to visit at any time of day or night, and to stay for as long as we needed, made a difficult time in our lives, a time to come together to share fond and very happy memories of a father, father-in-law, grandad, great grandad and very much loved character in the Whitehaven community.”
The Government recently published a Green Paper on care and support addressing how to place carers at the heart of discussions in order to build a long term, sustainable settlement for social care.
Mrs Harrison, added: “Copeland is a particularly rural constituency, which faces its own distinct challenges when it comes to primary and secondary care, so it is encouraging that Government has stated its commitment to ensuring that rural areas are properly supported through its ongoing reforms and investments.
“I will continue to work with our local hospitals, care homes, volunteer carers and GP surgeries to both understand the challenges and help where I can - I sincerely thank the highly professional, kind and committed workforce which we will all depend upon.”
Fred Bilsland, owner of St George’s Residential Care Home in Millom, said: “It was wonderful to meet Trudy last week at St George's and she left a lasting impression on many of our residents and staff.
“Trudy had worked in the care sector some years ago so had a good understanding of the many issues we face and of the pressures placed on staff within a highly pressurised and highly regulated environment.”
Any care homes or GP surgeries wishing to make an appointment for Mrs Harrison to visit should email Trudy.Harrison.MP@Parliament.uk