Husband's heartbreak after hospital bans him from visiting his wife suffering from Alzheimer's
Ray Butcher says he has not been
allowed to visit wife Carole for six monthsHe says hospital staff told him to stay away but does not know the reason
Says his wife remembers him but fears her condition is making her confused
Says is 'morally abhorrent' he cannot see her in her final months

By
Anna Hodgekiss

PUBLISHED:

13:15 GMT, 5 February 2013

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UPDATED:

13:27 GMT, 5 February 2013

A husband has spoken of his heartbreak at being banned from visiting his wife in hospital where she is being treated for Alzheimer's disease.

Ray Butcher, 65, says he has not been allowed to visit his wife Carole, 67, for six months after hospital staff told him to stay away.

But Mr Butcher is challenging the decision because he believes his wife said it as a result of her condition.

Ray Butcher says he has not seen his partner Carole, who is suffering from Alzheimer's, for six months, after the hospital where she is staying banned him from visiting

Ray Butcher says he has not seen his partner Carole, who is suffering from Alzheimer's, for six months, after the hospital where she is staying banned him from visiting

The couple have been together for 36 years. Mr Butcher said: We have spent half our lives together and now within her final months I am prevented from visiting her. It's morally abhorrent'

The couple have been together for 36 years. Mr Butcher said: We have spent half our lives together and now within her final months I am prevented from visiting her. It's morally abhorrent'

He said: 'We have spent half our lives together and now within her final months I am prevented from visiting her.

'I think is something of an outrage. I think it's morally abhorrent that I should be prevented from seeing her.'

The couple have been together for 36 years and have been married since 1994.

Mr Butcher says he has been a loving partner and friend to his wife and he 'desperately wishes' to continue visiting her before she dies.

Mrs Butcher, a former area manager for Oxfam, was first diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in early 2008.

Retired businessman Mr Butcher, of
Llanharry, near Cardiff, said he first noticed a change in mother-of-two
Carole when her memory began to deteriorate.

He said: 'Her memory was causing her problems and she was forgetting various things and using the wrong words.

Carole at a dog show before she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's

Ray Butcher

Carole was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in early 2008. Her husband was her full-time carer for three years until she moved into the Royal Glamorgan Hospital in Llantrisant, South Wales, in June

'She was using inappropriate words which indicated certainly to me that all wasn't well.'

He acted as her carer for three years before she moved into the Royal Glamorgan Hospital in Llantrisant, South Wales, in June.

But in August, Mr Butcher claims he was told by health officials that he was no longer allowed to visit his wife.

He said: 'What brought that view into her head I have no idea – and I have never been told. When
I visited her she remembered me but she couldn't remember my name. She
has a short-term memory span now measuring probably 20 to 30 seconds.'

He says doctors have not yet given him an official reason for not being able to visit his wife, adding: 'In August my wife expressed love and affection towards me and was grateful that I was there.'

He
says he has attended several meetings with hospital chiefs from the Cwm
Taf Health Board – but has still been unable to visit his wife.

Alone after 36 years: Mr Butcher said of his last visit, 'when I visited Carole she remembered me, but she couldn't remember my name'

Alone after 36 years: Mr Butcher said of his last visit, 'when I visited Carole she remembered me, but she couldn't remember my name'

The Royal Glamorgan Hospital, Cardiff, where Mrs Butcher is staying. Her husband says that despite attending several meetings, he has still been unable to visit his wife

The Royal Glamorgan Hospital, Cardiff, where Mrs Butcher is staying. Her husband says that despite attending several meetings, he has still been unable to visit his wife

He suggested being accompanied by staff members when visiting his wife if there were concerns for her welfare – but he said this has also been refused.

He said: 'Given her condition, which is the final stages of Alzheimer's, I do not see why I should not be allowed to visit her. 'It's distressing, as you can imagine.'

He has now instructed a solicitor to act on his behalf and sent correspondence to the health board.

Mr Butcher said: 'Carole was a very outgoing person and we enjoyed a very good relationship over the years. She lived life to the full. I just want to see her.'

Cwm Taf Health Board, which runs the hospital, declined to comment.