A PENSIONER says she has been left facing a "very degrading" ordeal every time she wants a bath – because council officials won't pay for her to have a walk-in shower.Pat Roe, aged 77, of Crown Place, off Duke Street, Sheffield, has worked all her life and has dedicated her retirement to supporting local charities by sewing items for them to sell.
But ever since having a hip replacement operation 14 months ago, which restricted her mobility, she has been forced to call on her daughters to help her in and out of the bath.
The mother-of-seven and grandmother-of-nine said she finds the process "not nice and very degrading".
Council officials did not even come round to assess her for support until three months after she requested help following her operation.
Despite her mobility problems, they decided Pat did not need a shower and could cope with a battery-operated chair which lifts her in and out of the bath.
However, Pat said: "It is not suitable because I cannot reach around my back or bend properly, so I can't use it."
She added: "I am continuing to use the bath but I can only do it with help from my daughters, which is not nice and I find very degrading.
"It's now 14 months since the operation and I am getting fed up of the situation."
Her plight was raised by family friend Kevan Smith, of Manor, who contacted The Star.
He said: "I find it unbelievable that a lady aged 77, who has worked hard all her life, has been turned down for a shower. It would do so much to improve her quality of life."
Officials from Sheffield Council promised to offer Pat an appointment to re-assess her situation.
But the former pub landlady, who used to run The Albert, in Attercliffe, and The Sportsman, at Darnall, said nobody has contacted her in the meantime and she still does not know whether they will look again at her case.
Pat, who also later worked as a care assistant for the NHS until her retirement aged 70, spends her spare time sewing to raise money for St Luke's Hospice and the Polio Foundation, in memory of her husband who died after the illness, which he contracted years ago in the forces, recurred 11 years ago.
She said: "I hope somebody will be in touch but I am still waiting."
Robert Broadhead, Sheffield Council's manager for physical disability and sensory impairment services, said: "We always make an individual assessment to find the best way of meeting a person's social care needs.
"When Mrs Roe was assessed at home, her bathing problems were taken into consideration and a battery operated lift was provided to help her get in and out of the bath safely.
"The equipment was chosen as the best means of assisting her to regain full use of her bathroom.
"Recently Mrs Roe contacted Sheffield Council to say she feels the equipment is not suitable, so an appointment has been made to re-assess her at home.
"We are sorry Mrs Roe feels the bathlift we installed isn't sufficient to resolve the situation shortly."
The Star, 30th May 2009