Family says N.S. lacking help for brain injury patients
A Nova Scotia mother is pleading for the provincial government to do more to help people who have suffered brain injuries.
Leslie Lowther's battle began 8 years ago when her son, Richard Rector, was in an all-terrain vehicle accident. Rector suffered a traumatic brain injury and spent time on life-support and in a coma.
"My heart breaks every day for him," Lowther said.
Rector, 26, was moved to rehab after he left the hospital. Lowther said he spent four months there and she says he made good progress.
But Rector's brain injury caused aggression and he was placed in adult protection.
Rector currently lives in the Quest Facility in Lower Sackville, a facility for the severely mentally ill who require different treatment than those with brain injuries.
Lowther said her son has been deteriorating ever since.
When asked what he does all day, Rector simply said, "nothing."
"I sit in my room and I just try to formulate three or four blocks of Lego into one big castle," Rector told the CBC's Yvonne Colbert.
Lowther said it's heartbreaking to watch.
"There's no structure," said Lowther. "There's no consistency, and there's no daily programming for him in order to prepare him for living out in the community, which he has the potential of doing with the right programming."
Lowther has asked to meet with the health minister, but she said she was told he doesn’t discuss individual cases.
The number of people with traumatic injuries in Nova Scotia isn't tracked. The Brain Injury Association of Nova Scotia said one brain injury costs between $6 million to $8 million a lifetime.
Lowther hopes that her struggles to get help for her son will shed light on a big issue, and help others.