HAVING unfortunately been a carer for a number of years for my disabled wife, who has numerous chronic health problems and is also vulnerable psychologically, we have had more than our fair share of interaction with various hospitals for many years now, both near and far.

Everywhere you go in our local hospitals there are posters declaring they are all welcoming of carers and encourage their involvement in the patients' care.

In truth, I suspect many carers know their charges' illnesses /conditions and the treatment thereof almost as well as many professionals. It is regretful, therefore, that any contribution I try to make is almost totally ignored, and trying to get to speak to those doctors in charge of her care proves universally difficult. Medication lists provided almost always go missing when a patient is moved from ward to ward, and often we have been told a particular brand/type is not available as it is unusual.

Then we have the facilities, in particular toilets that are far too small for anyone in a wheelchair and their carer to carry out everything necessary; a situation made worse when the toilet seat is broken or missing. The same can be said about most consulting rooms.

In fact, the toilet facilities in most if not all commercial premises offer far better conditions. On top of this, many hot taps supply only cold water, soap dispensers are empty and even many hand sanitisers are empty or broken .

I would like to know if my experience is unusual or if others have the same problems. If so, it’s about time the managers got their act together to provide better, more accessible facilities in order to make carers' already arduous roles a little easier.

Also to medics, please listen to carers as they usually have a deep and thorough understanding of the problems of the person they care for and have a valuable contribution to make on the whole.

I would appreciate it if my name and address is withheld so it has no adverse affect on my wife’s ongoing care in future.

Name and address withheld