Social services

Kevin highlights a BMJ article about a male nursing home resident with a pressing need:

It seemed that Mr Cooper had persistently been asking female members of staff to have sex with him. The problems seemed to have begun when Mr Cooper's regular visits from an elderly female friend had ceased.

Although rather deaf and undoubtedly frail Mr Cooper did not have significant cognitive impairment. He volunteered that his visitor had been providing him with paid sexual services, and that since this was no longer possible he wanted to hire another prostitute. He said his deafness and poor vision had now made it difficult for him to do this for himself, and he had consequently sought help from the staff. He had been firmly refused. I gathered that after a stalemate of many months he could think of nothing to do other than proposition the staff.

As usual, Europeans have a very sophisticated approach to these matters. I recall a story earlier this year in which an unemployed German man asked his government to finance his sexual activities, since his wife was couldn't return to his country.

This case also reminds me of the uproar when health plans started covering Viagra but continued to exclude birth control pills. Why is restoring intercourse considered a medical necessity, but preventing its consequences is considered a lifestyle choice?

I never had a good answer, until I read of the havoc caused by this libidinous nursing home patient:

His situation deteriorated. An extra male staff member was hired, devoted solely to following him around all day to prevent him from making improper suggestions. Both the staff member and Mr Cooper found this constant observation trying.

Later, staff at the residential home obtained the telephone numbers of prostitutes, and one agreed to meet Mr Cooper at a neutral venue. The staff were still divided, although the man who had followed Mr Cooper's every tottering step for many weeks was reported to be relieved.

Read the whole thing.