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Can I force a flatmate to seek medical assistance? (part 2: skin rash at night)


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I have a recurring flatmate (he comes and goes). I know him very well and we usually get along.

 

This time he has been scratching himself all night for a few days. You can hear him scratching from the other rooms, even just the noise is irritating. I jokingly asked him if he's got scabies and he's suddenly become defensive. He says it's only a bit of rash.

 

He only scratches himself at night but it can last all night. Mind you we share bathroom and communal areas. Yesterday I confronted him and suggested it was a good idea to see the doctor. As a reaction he's become violent and started threatening me and other flatmates. Landlord couldn't care less.

 

Rashes as localised to one area only. It might well be a sexual transmitted infection, in which case it's his business. Otherwise I fear it could be scabies.

 

Where do I legally stand on this? RE:my earlier post:

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?389704

 

In this case the symptoms are different.

 

Thanks and sorry, I'm starting to panic a bit.

"Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for Poundland"

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If you feel it is posing a risk to you, why don't you see your GP and explain the situation you're in.

 

Your GP will either say "don't worry" - in which case don't worry about catching anything - or might be able to confirm you are at risk of catching something in which case you have grounds to take the matter further.

 

They are probably very embarassed about the scratching and having a flatmate constantly nagging them to get checked out because it might be scabies probably isn't helping.

 

In reference to the other thread you linked is this the same "Eastern Bloc" woman (as you put it)?

Smile, you never know who's watching...

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In reference to the other thread you linked is this the same "Eastern Bloc" woman (as you put it)?

No. it's a bloke. The woman has long disappeared. And by the way I never referred to Eastern Block, she was actually from West Europe.

 

I've spoken to NHS direct and they said (as expected) that I cannot check symptoms on his behalf if he doesn't agree. However the lady on the phone said that it could well be scabies, however it only takes skin to skin contact to propagate.

 

At the same time if he is eventually diagnosed with scabies, all residents by law have to treated for scabies. This would be very annoying, as the treatment takes at least three weeks.

"Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for Poundland"

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It's probably something more simple like an allergic reaction. According to the GP I saw over this a few years ago, medical intervention isn't really needed. I just need anti histamines and possibly some cream.

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Scabies, yep, let me tell you exactly how this goes..... (I was 17 guys, a very long time ago).

 

In all your parts where you get warm, in between your toes, in between your fingers, palms, groin, armpits, even around ears, this little demon does its work. Its a nasty little mite which goes under the skin in these areas, and then when you get warm it starts to irritate your skin, I think by pulling on the hair follicles. So you scratch and scratch until you bleed, and scab up. You will rip the affected areas raw in your sleep.

 

And as you scratch, your bed sheets and clothing get infected, so when my dear old gran smoothed down my bed for me one morning, she also got infected. She scratched and ripped and tore at herself. And then because I had used towels in the bathroom, mum and dad then got it.

 

A quick trip to the GP to confirm, a tube of some cream or other which stinks, to be applied as directed, and DO NOT share towels, bedding, anything, with anyone else until you are clear, about a week.

 

Not sexually transmitted, but if you roll around in the sack with someone who has it, you will catch it sure as eggs is eggs, from their bedding alone.

 

I don't know that you can force your flat mate, but I doubt, if he has scabies, that he'll put up with it much longer, especially as it starts to spread and get infected.

 

I've got to go and have a good scratch now! Hope I haven't spoiled your dinner. X

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I have a recurring flatmate (he comes and goes). I know him very well and we usually get along.

 

This time he has been scratching himself all night for a few days. You can hear him scratching from the other rooms, even just the noise is irritating. I jokingly asked him if he's got scabies and he's suddenly become defensive. He says it's only a bit of rash.

 

He only scratches himself at night but it can last all night. Mind you we share bathroom and communal areas. Yesterday I confronted him and suggested it was a good idea to see the doctor. As a reaction he's become violent and started threatening me and other flatmates. Landlord couldn't care less.

 

Rashes as localised to one area only. It might well be a sexual transmitted infection, in which case it's his business. Otherwise I fear it could be scabies.

 

Where do I legally stand on this? RE:my earlier post:

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?389704

 

In this case the symptoms are different.

 

Thanks and sorry, I'm starting to panic a bit.

 

You don't seem to have much look with your flat mates do you. Please don't take this the wrong way but do you think you may be over reacting?

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You don't seem to have much look with your flat mates do you. Please don't take this the wrong way but do you think you may be over reacting?

 

I was wondering the same thing.

 

I had similar symptoms after moving to uni. Having had an allergic reaction a few months previously, I followed what the doctor said. It didn't work. Went to the GP who told me I have Pityriasis Rosea. I was given some cream and some tablets. Unfortunately for me, it lasted 6 weeks. I had it mildly on my eyelids and what was on my hands, cracked. That really hurt.

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You don't seem to have much look with your flat mates do you. Please don't take this the wrong way but do you think you may be over reacting?

I was wondering the same thing.

 

What happened to the customary "Please do not be judgemental. The OP is asking for help"?

"Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for Poundland"

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  • 7 months later...

This is a deff over reaction..can't force someone to seek medical treatment..this would be a violation of their human rights...but sadly it happens alot in this country to mental health patients...with issues not related to their mental illness...but that is a subject for another thread.

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Most tenancies have a anti social behavior clause.

 

If your health is being put at risk I think its only fair that if the tenant is not cooperating that you express your concerns in writing to your LL

 

I have a housemate that was coughting spluttering and showing signs of servre COPD and or TB and as I have a life long condition I cannot afford that risk. The T was not registering with a doctor so after a few months he was threatened with eviction. As a result he registered and the doctors took immediate action to try and get him to quit smoking.

 

My method was first to express concern for his health. In the end I had to say even if he did not care for himself he had a responsibility to not endanger my health. I also scared him with what could happen if he did not get seen. As it turns out I was right. Bear also in mind I expressed my concerns to my consultant so had some backing. I was able to tell LL that my consultant was concerned for my health.

 

 

Just walk a fine line and avoid being accused of harassing him though.

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The SabreSheep, All information is offered on good faith and based on mine and others experiences. I am not a qualified legal professional and you should always seek legal advice if you are unsure of your position.

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COPD is not contagious...what makes you assume the person has TB?.

 

I dont think this person should be forced to see a GP and his medical record should be private..forcing someone to quit smoking is a human rights violation.

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Dawn, you have reopened an old thread. It might be better for you to start your own.

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You mis understand me

 

I know COPD is not contageous, BUT if you read correctly my approach was first concern for his health.

Secondly I never said he had TB (As I am not a medical Professional), however his symptoms could suggest he had it or 100 other things.

 

FYI his symptoms were

 

A bad cough that had been going on for 3 months and was getting worse

Clucting his chest as if in pain

Coughing up blood and flem. (Apart form hearing him yonk it up all through the day he woudl spit it out on the doorstep!!!

Weakness and fatigue. He would often spend MOST of the day in bed. Completely lethargic.

Very poor diet. Chips and burgers only and energy drink etc when he did eat.

Complaining of being to hot all the time (Even when it was not)

 

As i said to him, it could be many things, but other than a possibility of TB it was also signs of COPD. He had said he had been like that since he was 16. He started chain smoking at 13! SO he thought it was normal. (He is 37 now)

 

I did not force him to give up smoking, the doctor said he had to for health reasons.

 

He was told in advance what my condition is and the fact as a result my immune system is compromised. The fact that he was displaying some signs of an illness they IS contagious and would harm me in a life threatening manner was enough for my consultant to advise me to take action.

 

 

And you are right, forcing someone to quit smoking is a human rights violation however it does not exclude you from behaving in a socially acceptable manner. He was not threatened with eviction for smoking. He was threatened with eviction for potentially putting the life of another tenant at risk due to his negligence.

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The SabreSheep, All information is offered on good faith and based on mine and others experiences. I am not a qualified legal professional and you should always seek legal advice if you are unsure of your position.

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