1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Advice needed for arranging carers for mum at home.

Discussion in 'Personal' started by daffodilval, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. Hoping someone can advice me, please.
    My elderly, frail mum lives alone in an authority bungalow, she has very restricted mobility due to osteoarthritus and recovering fron a hip replacement due to a fall.
    Whilst on holiday this half term i have been caring for most of her needs, hygene, cleaning, laundry, dressing etc. meals are sorted as she has an excellent, frozen meals, delivery service. But it has made me realise just how little she can do for herself. I honestly think that if I hadn't been there this week, she would just sit, not get dressed or wash herself and would have really struggled just to get to the loo.
    She recently had an assessment which where they thought she was capable of looking after herself!!! (she has all the aids in place)
    My brother and I both work full time and both have families of our own and I have to catch 2 buses to get there as I don't drive.
    My question is, without having the means to pay for private carers, how do we go about getting NHS carers? or don't they exsist anymore. We need help as we are both totally worn out and cannot possibly help her like this once we are back at work.
    Thanks in advance.

     
  2. Hoping someone can advice me, please.
    My elderly, frail mum lives alone in an authority bungalow, she has very restricted mobility due to osteoarthritus and recovering fron a hip replacement due to a fall.
    Whilst on holiday this half term i have been caring for most of her needs, hygene, cleaning, laundry, dressing etc. meals are sorted as she has an excellent, frozen meals, delivery service. But it has made me realise just how little she can do for herself. I honestly think that if I hadn't been there this week, she would just sit, not get dressed or wash herself and would have really struggled just to get to the loo.
    She recently had an assessment which where they thought she was capable of looking after herself!!! (she has all the aids in place)
    My brother and I both work full time and both have families of our own and I have to catch 2 buses to get there as I don't drive.
    My question is, without having the means to pay for private carers, how do we go about getting NHS carers? or don't they exsist anymore. We need help as we are both totally worn out and cannot possibly help her like this once we are back at work.
    Thanks in advance.

     
  3. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Sounds like a postcode lottery to me. When my Mum came out of hospital two months ago she was assessed as needing 3 hourly visits from social carers each day, with the first 6 weeks funded by NHS. Truth be told she didn't really need any of it. The only problems she's had are with side effects of radiotherapy, otherwise she's currently completely independent in terms of cooking, hygiene etc. She voluntarily dropped the required hours to one a day, and for now they've stopped it altogether, although it can be reactivated as her illness progresses. The rate we were quoted for visits after NHS funding ran out was £12 an hour, and that's means tested. I think NHS sub-contract to private carers in a lot of cases. In my Mum's area anyone with assets less than £23K (house isn't counted) is considered eligible for NHS funding.

    You should maybe query the original assessment and see if a more suitable means-tested NHS-arranged support package is possible. Your Mum's GP may be the starting point, or the consultant at the hospital if she's still receiving out-patient treatment. Having said that, the issue for your Mum could be that she's probably expected to improve after the hip operation, so maybe there's an underlying assumption of no support being needed. The NHS are very bad at joined up thinking - each department focuses on its own little bit, and where there's more than one problem they rarely see the bigger picture. You sometimes have to rattle cages to get a result. By way of illustration I recently had to lodge a formal complaint before they finally located the records of my Mum's initial admission to the hospital so we could claim on her insurance policy.

    My sympathies with your dilemma. My sister and I are in a very similar situation and we know it's going to get more demanding in the coming months. It's difficult enough coping with illness in elderly parents without all the bureaucratic battles you have to fight too.
     
  4. anon468

    anon468 New commenter

    Hi Val. Sorry to hear you're struggling. Been in a similar-ish position myself, though different circumstances.
    You need to contact Social Services and request a meeting where your mother's real needs are discussed and a further assessment is made, taking into account all of the things you've outlined above and with you and/or your brother present. Elderly people can be notoriously proud and will put on a brave face to the world so that it often seems they are more than capable of managing without assistance, when really they are desperately in need of it.
    Your mum should definitely be entitled to the lower amount (possibly even the higher amount) of Attendance Allowance. This is a tax free benefit which is paid directly into your mum's bank account every 4 weeks and will help towards the cost of providing carers via the NHS. The lower amount is currently £49.30. The higher rate is £73.60. Social Services can help you with the application for AA. It's also not a means tested benefit.
    You can most definitely arrange carers via the Social Care Directorate of your local health authority. The cost is charged per quarter hour of care required and as far as I'm aware there's no limit to the amount of care/visits required. The cost depends on where you live (LA area). To give you an example, my mum was charged £3.48 per quarter hour in 2010/11. She required 7 hours of care per week, so that would have cost £97.44. However, you can't be asked to pay more than the maximum weekly charge for care (no matter how many hours you receive). In 2010/11 the weekly maxiumum was £90, so that was what mum paid (it was actually £86.40 because she got a 4% discount for paying by direct debit).
    Unfortunately, due to jolly austerity measures, the LA was proposing to raise the maximum weekly charge to anything between £120 and £180!! We never got to find out what they actually did increase it to, because mum ended up having to go into permanent residential care in March.
    So, there will possibly be a financial gap between what your mum gets in the form of AA and the care charges. I could be wrong, but I'm almost certain that if you have assets and/or income below a certain level then you won't be charged for your care. I don't have experience of this, because mum was always self funding. Again, the best people to turn to for advice are Social Services or the CAB if you just want to do some info gathering at this stage.
    Lots of luck with it Val. If you want to email me, I can PM you my email address if you think it would be helpful.
    <u></u>
     
  5. Get local advocacy services involved, contact MP, check who did the assessment, are they qualified, are they independent.?
    If you have to, get a solicitor involved.
    This area is a minefield but if you fight, you can win.
    Checkout, human rights and quote them incessantly.
    Don't be emotionally blackmailed with tales of budget cuts etc.
    Be a pain in the butt.

     

Share This Page