Choices of EMI Care Home

Discussion in 'ARCHIVE FORUM: Support discussions' started by Anjew, Nov 24, 2011.

  1. Anjew

    Anjew Registered User

    Nov 24, 2011
    Mom-in-law suffers from Dementia and Alzheimer's and has been residing happily in a housing association appartment and benefits from regular short visits throughout the day from staff. However her deteriorating condition has resulted in an assessment that she now needs full-time supervision in an EMI care home.

    She has been offered a place in a local EMI home by our local social services and my wife and I visited it today to assess prior to accepting. This was our first experience of visiting such a facility and we found it a shock to the system and quite a distressing experience. Is this a common reaction?

    On reporting back our reaction diplomatically to social services they were sympathetic, but said it was the only 'funded' place available and likely to be the only place in the foreseeable future.

    My wife is desperately upset about the prospect of having to make a decision between sending her mother to a home that is so depressing and staying in the appartment she currently lives in but is no longer suitable for her. Has anyone any helpful advice, please?
  2. Farmergirl

    Farmergirl Registered User

    May 24, 2011
    I think you have to visit and judge yourself.
    I went to visit my first one last summer...its in our town here and is only 1 mile from our house.
    Its horrendous. People walking around wailing and staff ignoring. Old ladies sitting staring into space with a TV blaring. I think the lack of interaction was what got me.
    I came home and said to John 'you wouldnt put even someone you hate in there'.
    When i went to look at the place mum goes to for day care (another residential home)I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, it looked a tiny bit swisher - clean with attractive furnishings and nice carpet, BUT, the big plus are the staff - they actually seem to like the residents. My mum even has a nickname, and one of the younger girls teases her all the time - they get on like a mother and daughter.
    There is a list of daily activities and a menu borad up, so we can see whats on offer when we drop her. they go trips out for cream tea etc, and a hairdresser attends weekly. Some of the men help the gardener, and I think there is a really nice atmosphere.
    Im sure there are times when things go wrong, but in the 6 months since mum's been going, I can only praise them.

    I think if while you are looking round, ask the residents how they feel about the place.
    I did, and was pleased that they felt confident to say to me...not frightened in case they said something wrong.
  3. Keely

    Keely Registered User

    Aug 6, 2007
    I can only deeply sympathise, I was looking on Tuesday at EMI homes for my mother. The ratings were good re QCC but I could smell urine as I came to the front entrance a sure sign to me that hygiene of kind of another is not good. Both home managers talked the talk but how do know, short of spending a day there and observing. It bugs me that trip advisor is can be used re choosing a holiday but choosing home on behalf of a loved one is left to a list and gut feeling and QCC reports who don't consider the state of the place or institutionalised look or feeling - if they did I suspect the homes I have looked at and many more would be closed down.
    What I will say though you can look out of the area if you are unhappy with a home and the chances are the homes that happen to have a spare place in an emergency is unlikely to be one of the better ones as they all have waiting lists.
    Sorry to depress you but I am also struggling with very sad distressing situation. My advice is do not accept it as a place if you are not happy with it.
  4. Christin

    Christin Registered User

    Jun 29, 2009
    #4 Christin, Nov 24, 2011
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2011
    Hello Anjew and welcome to Talking Point.

    I am sorry that you have to make this decision for your MIL. We had to make a similar decision earlier this year and it was very difficult indeed. We did have some experience in that my FIL had several respite periods before permanent care, and we discovered that there is quite a difference between different types of care.

    The first care home said, after five days, that they could not cope with my FIL again due to his needs being too great. We found that very upsetting, it was a nice home and we were pleasantly surprised when we had visited it.

    When first visiting EMI homes, we were shocked, and also felt that they weren't right for my FIL, and we delayed the decision for as long as we could. We did say that there was one place we couldn't let him go to. However in my opinion, they deal with very difficult circumstances and I believe you have to take this into account, but there are many points to look out for.

    The home that FIL was admitted to was some distance from us, but we did feel that it was the best we saw. The staff were pleasant and welcoming, it was clean, other residents were seen and some thought we were visiting them. The manager had an open door policy and felt we could ask any questions and speak to staff at any time. If I am honest we wish we hadn't had to make the decision, but we reached a point where we could no longer manage at home.

    I would suggest you visit as many as is practical, even if they don't have vacancies at the moment. It will give you a comparision which may help to make your decision. Do check the reports, they may help you with any questions you wish to ask, but really it comes down to you being as happy as you can be with the care they will give to your MIL.

    This AS factsheet may give you some guidance 'Selecting a Care Home'

    I am sure others will be along soon with more experience.

    Very best wishes to you all, please let us know how you get on. x
  5. beechtree

    beechtree Registered User

    Jul 9, 2011
    EMI care home search

    When I was searching for care home for my dear Mum I found helpful as starting point. The local authority funding might not meet all fees for best places - resident or family has to top up. I also found best places had waiting list. We waited 6 months for a light pleasant room in a lovely home in well cared for gardens with kind, imaginative staff who take the time to understand their very confused residents very well. I visited at least 6 places and had some pretty shocking,depressing tours of grim places before finally finding the right home.
  6. Bob S

    Bob S Registered User

    Mar 24, 2009
    Welwyn Garden City
    Ths is quite a misleading statement. Family members have no obligation to pay top up fees whatsoever.
  7. Christin

    Christin Registered User

    Jun 29, 2009
    I would like to add too that the most expensive are not necessarily the best.
  8. beechtree

    beechtree Registered User

    Jul 9, 2011
    Sorry - I didnt intend to suggest it is legal obligation, simply that resident or family members make up the difference, if necessary and feasible. I certainly know of people in the situation of paying extra on top of LA contribution. I appreciate that it is not always necessary or even possible.
  9. bunnies

    bunnies Registered User

    May 16, 2010
    I think it is a very common experience to feel, on a first visit to an EMI home, that it is an awful prospect. Of course some homes are much better than others, but I would say that probably the home you feel most comfortable in yourself is not necessarily the one that would be best for your relative. I found that many homes looked nice and showed their visitors their good side, so you had the feeling that you had been to a nice hotel - but it is easy to forget that one's relative may have a different list of priorities to oneself. Without a doubt the most important thing is the attitude of staff, which is also hard to assess, but indications of flexibility in dealing with individuals is a good sign.

    So give yourself time to adjust to what they offer, and try and remember what you think your relative will be bothered by, and what they won't. I agree that hygiene is always important, but actually people being rather 'vocal' and a bit of chaos is not necessarily a bad thing - at least they aren't all trapped in their rooms (something I saw in worse care homes).
  10. Bob S

    Bob S Registered User

    Mar 24, 2009
    Welwyn Garden City
    The main point about top ups is that families are often misled by social workers that the local authority will only pay up to a certain amount per week and it will have to be topped up if the cost of the home is above that. If a home is more expensive than the LA limit but there is nothing else available that can cater for a persons needs then the LA have to pay it.

    There is a good thread on here by Beckyhux (I think) that explains the true position about top ups. Too many people hae been conned by social services into paying top ups and it is still happening today.

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