A Private Care Home Duty of Care?

Anne@Alzh

New member
Jul 17, 2020
4
My Mum died from Covid caught in her Care home, self funded. The so called "Manager" has emailed me that I have to collect her possibly contaminated possesions or will be "invoiced" I'm shielding because of Epilepsy and would have to do several trips on public transport, bus. I had earlier contact by phone to the other "Managers" to explain that I would Gift a TV , 2 leather chairs and all possible clothing destroyed as hazardous waste. It was agreed, by phone. And then a phone call from whoever knows she, say's I'm the manager, "We need your Mums room cleared as we want to paint it" And then the email yesterday basically saying get rid of it or you will be charged. All this on top of my belief that I thought this Care home would keep her safe. What can I do?
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,583
Welcome to the forum @Anne@Alzh Sorry to hear about your mum and the current situation at the care home which must be very distressing for you. It sounds as though there have been some communication failures between the staff.

Does the care home contract state that you must personally clear the room? In my mum's home the staff put the belongings into bin bags for collection so that the room can then be cleaned/redecorated if necessary before family can collect the items. Could you reply to the email you received yesterday to explain that you are currently shielding and are therefore unable to collect the belongings yourself so could they please destroy them/deal with them as agreed by phone by xxxxxx on (date). Or is there a manager above the care home manager who you could contact to discuss this?
 

lemonbalm

Registered User
May 21, 2018
853
I'm sorry to hear about your mum.

I agree with @Louise7 . I would respond to the manager's e-mail saying that you already had a verbal agreement that your were gifting the TV and leather chairs and had requested that clothing be discarded, and see what the response is. Perhaps it is just a communication breakdown between what sounds like too many managers.

If they insist on the room being cleared, I suppose they will charge you for the removal of the items, as you are not able to do so yourself. One other option is to arrange for a charity to collect the larger items, which they wouldn't charge for, British Heart Foundation for example, or offer them free to a family member or friend if they collect. It's not very nice to have to deal with these things on top of losing your mum and I do think the care home could be a bit more sensitive about it.
 

Anne@Alzh

New member
Jul 17, 2020
4
Thank you for some sound advice. I will try the email response first. Most of the confusion lies in the "Too many Managers" not talking to each other I think. Strange that I have just rung the Care Home to find out how much stuff has to be taken away and the answer was "There are no managers working Saturdays and Sundays" At a time like this? I didn't mention here that the Care Home has been in lockdown since February due to sickness and diarrhoea so they wouldn't let families in to clear the rooms anyway. As for offering the possesions to family, none of them wanted to know when Mum was diagnosed with dementia and don't want to know now. Sorry for the rant, It has helped to know you are here. Thank you.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,583
The manager at mum's care home doesn't seem to work at weekends either although there's a designated person to deal with an emergencies. How long have the belongings been awaiting collection - sounds like it might be quite a while? It could be that this wasn't so much of a problem earlier on in the pandemic but some homes seem to now be taking in new residents so that might be why it's suddenly become more of an issue. Hopefully the email route will get things sorted for you. Fingers crossed.