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  1. #1
    Registered User DAL's Avatar
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    Attendance Allowance Advice

    Hi All,

    I'm feeling quite anxious about completing the AA form for my Dad who has recently been diagnosed with Mixed Dementia. Age Concern were very unhelpful and told me that unless he needs help washing and dressing each day then he won't get anything.

    Any tips on the form to help alleviate my anxiety and help Dad get support?

    Thanks

    Dawn


    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator sue38's Avatar
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    I'm sorry Age UK were unhelpful. I agree it's not the easiest form to complete -try to describe dad's needs on his worst day.
    Sue

    Carer and Volunteer Moderator

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  3. #3
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    Try the CAB or your local Carers Centre. They can't all be that unhelpful. Remember it's about the help he needs, not the help he's already getting. Go through the list of questions on the form and note down the frequency and duration of tasks he needs help with. 20 minutes per task is a good guidance for success. Then elaborate in the text field. Think of absolutely everything, no matter how small a task. If you have any reports from the memory clinic etc, include them. The more the merrier. It's a long form but it prompts you with detailed questions. If he needs help at night as well, he'll get the higher rate, otherwise, it's the lower rate. But once he gets the lower rate and his need increases to night time, application for the higher rate can be easily done, with a much shorter form.

    Best of luck. If I could do it, so can you.
    Just keep swimming!

  4. #4
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    You have to state the worst case scenario - they won't accept things like cleaning, cooking and shopping only personal care such as dressing, shaving, washing, getting food, taking medication etc. Put down any little tiny thing he needs help with including support for their emotional state, anxiety, etc. I think there's a space for taking them out also, and put if they have hearing, mobility or eyesight problems. My mum got it at the lower rate as she doesn't so far need help at night. I went to se a lovely person at the Alzheimer's society and she talked me through the form giving suggestions and I got some ideas from a website I'll see if I can find it. I can get out the form I did if you need more details.
    By the way, I have found Age Concern unhelpful on different topics!

  5. #5
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    My OH doesn't need help washing or dressing but he needs to be given the correct clothes and have dirty clothes taken away, washed etc. He doesn't need help eating but he couldn't shop or cook for himself. I know the form is a horror but just do your best. I wrote the answers as if I was my OH. Someone from the Attendance Allowance did phone me to clarify a few things. She was very non-committal but he was awarded the full amount. (He gets up at night very disorientated). All I know is my OH wouldn't survive for long without my assistance. Go for it with the form. Best of luck.

  6. #6
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    My husband was refused on our first AA application. The Nurse at the memory clinic was really angry about that. She came to our house, took away with her the copies of the forms I had filled in. She came back a day later with everything written out, as it should appear to the AA board. She told me it is the way you word things.
    e.g. He had Dementia, deteriorating daily, he wasn't going to improve, becoming more dependent on help, daily. Couldn't go shopping, or use public transport alone, do housework, make tea etc. I had to get up 3/4/5 times a night. He would get up to go to the bathroom, on his own, but, there was the danger that he would make a wrong turn and fall down the stairs. It is also about the carer, put down every detail, however small you may think it is, everything that has to be done, or you have to be there for to help him with.

    I also had someone phone to discuss things on my 1st form, the nurse said this should not have happened, they should have contacted the memory clinic for any information they wanted.

    I suggest you contact your memory clinic ( or whomever deals with your Dad's case) Doctor/nurse for their help. I could not have had better help from our memory clinic staff. A year or so later I applied for higher rate AA, which was approved in a couple of weeks. I

    Hope you get the help and advice you need soon.
    Last edited by Mal2; 15-11-2016 at 12:36 AM.

  7. #7
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    I got help to fill it in from someone - I think it was our social worker. They know how to word it correctly - you have to put the worst case scenario.

  8. #8
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    AgeUK did OHs and they were brilliant!

  9. #9
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    Cab

    I went to citizens advice and they were a great help,they will handle your appeal too if needed,good luck

  10. #10
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    My local contact from the Alzheimer's Society came to my house and helped me fill in this form, which took us an hour at least, and she knew what she was doing! She also helped me with getting the council tax reduction. Of all the help I've had, she was the most use to me. She keeps in touch, and one day when she phoned I told her about problems with Peter's behaviour at the nursing home. She got in touch with the mental health nurse at the memory clinic and she in turn turned up at the nursing home with a psychiatrist. I can't recommend their help more.

    Liz

  11. #11
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    I was also told that if you have a diagnosis of dementia it's almost guaranteed. Remember- write down all the negatives, this is no time to be positive!

  12. #12
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    I didn't think my dad would get attendance allowance as he can still do everything for himself. But when I thought about it I realised he needed prompting to do some things (eg washing) can't go anywhere by himself, he gets lost, and although he can dress himself he sometimes needs a little adjustment or reminding to put clean clothes on. Everything takes a long time and things will only get worse.

    I would describe him as semi independent 😕

    I wrote all this down on the form and we got the lower level. I was worried it might be refused.

  13. #13
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    I made an appointment with a local 'Age Concern' place and they were absolutely lovely-asked me questions and then filled out the form for me with the 'right words'! But, yeah, it was every little detail. The lady said to me to stop feeling guilty and be honest-we had to be brutal, but as she said, if we didn't write it down, the person taking care of the form at the other end wouldn't necessarily know what we were doing for her. And it's such a long form! Also, as my MIL lives alone, once she had her aa approved, I applied for a council tax exemption-apparently she's entitled to that because of the dementia (I'm not sure at what age that you stop paying for that? But MIL was young when she was diagnosed) Both have been a great help in paying for her day centre & befreinder service, so I'm glad I got that sorted out straight away.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bunpoots View Post
    I didn't think my dad would get attendance allowance as he can still do everything for himself. But when I thought about it I realised he needed prompting to do some things (eg washing) can't go anywhere by himself, he gets lost, and although he can dress himself he sometimes needs a little adjustment or reminding to put clean clothes on. Everything takes a long time and things will only get worse.

    I would describe him as semi independent 😕

    I wrote all this down on the form and we got the lower level. I was worried it might be refused.
    My mum got the lower level too (only because she didn't need help at night at the time). She was living alone with no relatives near enough to help, only a cleaner once a week. She was managing personal care but struggling with most other daily tasks at home. Not eating properly. Not going out because of poor mobility.
    "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans" -John Lennon ('Beautiful Boy')

  15. #15
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    I was advised by someone who hears appeals against refusal of attendance allowance to use the end section to write a little detailed history of how we got to where we are - e.g. noticing things weren't right and how. She said most forms that are rejected do not have enough information on them. "I have to give her pills" isn't enough. "I have to give her her pills because she'd forget to take them or take the wrong dose and she can't understand how to use a dosette box" is better (if that's the case of course).

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