Cost of care homes! Blimey!

Discussion in 'I care for a person with dementia' started by Cazb85, Jan 8, 2016.

  1. Cazb85

    Cazb85 Registered User

    Jan 2, 2016
    24
    I am in such a quandary about my dad. I am so extremely tired and feel I can't cope so I have been looking into respite. I am also due to have an operation so would definitely need it. As I have said in a previous post I am an only child with no family and a full on job. Dad is showing all classic signs including wanting to go home (even though he is), mood swings, not sleeping, at times not recognising me, thinking he is still working, incontenance in the night. The list could go on! I am staying with him whilst he recovers from a broken arm. Not sure if he will get full movement back in the arm.

    If he takes to respite well I am considering the possibility of him needing to go into a home on a permanent basis. But OMG the cost! Been to two care homes and they are around £1,200 per week. How on earth do I self fund this. The decision to sell the house is one I am struggling with as it is our home and it's a big decision to make by myself. Got financial advisors involved but my head is spinning! Am I missing out on any funding that would help me! He is on higher rate attendance allowance and a pension but a month of this won't cover two weeks in a care home!

    Left a care home today thinking are everyone's relatives care homes wealthy and is this just completely a ridiculous idea to even consider. Apologies if this is a really personal question for everyone but I am just so confused!
     
  2. 1mindy

    1mindy Registered User

    Jul 21, 2015
    539
    Female
    Shropshire
    Not at this stage yet.Like you I have no idea how people afford it . My mum paid £3700 pcm from around 1999until 2008. She covered it from her pension, she had a good job and good planning brain. But my OH didcplan but had all his pension with Equitable Life ,enough said, I am 57 and haven't been able to work for 18 months as I care full time now so not a lot coming in to our house. So not much help rea!!y. But I am worried. Think I will need to downsize once again when it comes to it.A house is really only ours for such a short time, we are just custodians, so never be precious about a house.
     
  3. tigerlady

    tigerlady Registered User

    Nov 29, 2015
    427
    I feel so sorry for you, to have all this worry at your age

    There is funding out there for people who qualify, its called NHS Continuing Health Care (CHC) and you may have read about it in other threads, but it can be very difficult to get but everyone has a right to apply for it, and I think far more people with dementia should get it.

    In the meantime, check out the CQC reports of care home you are interested in, and rule out the ones with poor reports. As others have said, its the quality of care thats more important than the surroundings.

    And I know how hard it is to deal with social services, but try and get as much help as you can from them and the CPN. As others said, you should qualify to have some sort of respite.

    Here is a link for you regarding the CHC

    http://www.ageuk.org.uk/Documents/E...and_NHS-funded_nursing_care_fcs.pdf?dtrk=true
     
  4. susy

    susy Registered User

    Jul 29, 2013
    806
    North East
    Have you had a financial assessment by social services? If you are looking at respite instead of a permanent placement then i believe it's a different game altogether. The house isn't counted as his money.
    Does he have care visits during the day or go to day care?
     
  5. Cazb85

    Cazb85 Registered User

    Jan 2, 2016
    24
    Thank you. It is a lot to cope with and my selfish side is saying I need to live my life yet make sure dad is happy and the best way would be in a care home. Someone else has told me about CHC. Will have a read.

    I'm going to have a look at some smaller homes over the weekend. Fingers crossed they are good. One I went to today was £1,300 -£1,600 per week depending on level of care!!!!

    I will try social services again next week. Didn't have much luck this week!!!!!!

    Dad started with two half an hour visits per week and only since breaking his arm have they reluctantly made it three but it took nearly a week longer than expected for them to sort it out and arrange carers to do it!

    I had a financial assessment and I am paying £81 per week for home care but one of the carers said she didn't think that was full rate and she thought full rate was £120. I have no idea!! It's all a big expensive mess to me!
     
  6. Spiro

    Spiro Registered User

    Mar 11, 2012
    522
    The prices will vary, depending on where you live. Nursing homes will be more expensive than residential care homes.

    Your Dad should have his care needs assessed before he goes into respite. I haven't read your previous posts, but if he were to qualify for Attendance Allowance, then that should help cover the costs of respite care.

    Some councils have a list of the local homes in their area on their website. Another good starting point is the CQC website, where you can search by area.
     
  7. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    22,489
    Female
    Near Southampton
    You say you had a financial assessment but it should be your father's financial assets that should be assessed. All costs are paid by him. Perhaps that is what you mean.
     
  8. Pickles53

    Pickles53 Registered User

    Feb 25, 2014
    2,482
    Radcliffe on Trent
    #8 Pickles53, Jan 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2016
    Welcome to TP, this is definitely the best place for whatever advice and support you need.

    Can't advise on respite ££ rules as haven't any experience of this type of care personally.

    If your dad did move to a care home permanently the house would possibly be disregarded because of your own circumstances and health issues. Have a look at the relevant section of the new care act guidance in this link.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/upload...e_Act_Book.pdf


    See Annex B, paragraph 34 which sets out when a property is disregarded.

    As Saffie says, it is your father's income and capital which are relevant, not yours. The LA must offer at least one home placement which meets all your father's assessed needs and which does not require any 'top-up' fee from anyone else.

    Even if your father is assessed as self-funding, if he does not have more than £23,500 capital excluding the house there should be a 12-week disregard.

    The guidance is not the most enthralling read but it really does pay to do your homework as not all SW seem to be up to speed on the rules. They are less likely to mess you around if you can refer to the statutory guidance.

    PS. Do you have power of attorney for your father? If you don't, and he doesn't have capacity, then selling the house would be problematic anyway and you would have to apply for deputyship first. The other idea would be to have a deferred payment agreement. Do post again if you need to know more about this.

    PPS. Good quality care does cost, but the best home is not always the fanciest. What matters most is the people and how they care for the residents not the decor.
     
  9. lin1

    lin1 Registered User

    Jan 14, 2010
    9,322
    Female
    East Kent
    I agree with Saffie, if they did a financial assessment on you, they were very wrong.
    It should have been done on your Dads finances alone.
    Also any payments for care visits he is deemed responsible for, I believe that SS have a sliding scale which they use to determine not only whether or not a person pays towards their own care but also how much they should pay.

    Hope this helps.
     
  10. jaymor

    jaymor Volunteer Moderator

    Jul 14, 2006
    12,237
    Female
    England
    Cazb is not living with her father, sorry if I have this wrong, so if her Father is sole occupant of his home then it becomes part of his assets and used in the calculation as to whether he is self funding.

    CHC funding is given when medical needs are a priority over care needs.

    One other thought is about moving counties for care. When it comes to the LA taking over the care when assets are below the level of self funding then the LA where you live is responsible. Not sure which LA would be responsible if you have moved counties to go into care and this might cause problems when asking for funds after being self funding. Will the LA where you lived before going into care be responsible or the LA where the care home is?

    Getting the right level of care is important, there is no point in paying for care that won't be needed. Finding a home where they can offer several levels of care is good, then the person needing the care can move within the home as needed, causing as little upset as possible.

    It is very true, hotel surroundings are just that, it is the care and the staff that are important. There is a lot of moving around and large pieces of equipment in a care home and knocks etc to walls and furnishing is inevitable so a little shabby is acceptable. Bad smells and dirt are not acceptable. Homely is what it needs to be:)

    I hope you can sort out a home that is right for your Father, it is not easy, I had to do it for my husband. We looked at over 20 homes and all but three were discarded.
     
  11. Cazb85

    Cazb85 Registered User

    Jan 2, 2016
    24
    Thank you so much everyone. Gosh it really helps to have this forum.

    apologies I didn't make myself clear. The financial assessment was on my dad not me. I do have POA which I did 6 months ago. a friend who is a pensions advisor literally took me to a solicitors with dad. Didn't realise at the time how important it would be to us! Must thank him! Dads assets excluding house is way below £23k. It's the house which pushes it up!

    Dad lives in East London and the care homes I have seen here are poor. Also been advised my a paramedic friend who goes to a lot of them - don't do it round here!

    I do have a flat in Essex which has been left empty as I am now staying with dad. This is going to sound so trivial but if I sold the house the contents and important stuff (mostly memories of mum) wouldn't fit into the flat and also I would have to rehome my dog and cats as management of my flat doesn't allow animals. This is so trivial but it would break my heart and I would want to live here whilst I sort myself out plus make sure my health is stable. I have Crohn's disease which is stress aggravated.

    I will today visit a few smaller ones and see what they are like.

    I am just so tired and having to work then trying to read up on all this stuff and look after dad is just so much. Wish someone would say 'don't worry I will do it all.' Where are those magic fairies hey!
     
  12. jaymor

    jaymor Volunteer Moderator

    Jul 14, 2006
    12,237
    Female
    England
    It is very sad and understandably upsetting when a home has to be sold to pay for care but unfortunately that is how it is. LAs are more than struggling with their diminishing budgets and when there are assets available they will want them used. As you were staying to care for your Father then when the care ends you will no longer need to be there. As I said it is hard and upsetting and not what any of us think about before dementia enters our lives.

    Try to focus on finding a home that will suit your Father, you will have far more choice available as he will be self funding. Think about the money from his present home is being transferred to the care home of your choice to give him the best care and surroundings it can. You won't believe the peace of mind you can get once the right care home with the right level of care has been found.

    Take care and stay positive and keep posting.
     
  13. Cazb85

    Cazb85 Registered User

    Jan 2, 2016
    24
    Thanks Jay.

    I think it is how quickly it has progressed which is also making my head spin. If it had been a gradual decline over a couple of years it would be easy to take but since summer the symptoms have just escalated.

    I am keen to try a couple of weeks respite and see how he takes to it. If he does really well my decision will be that much easier. Does this sound a realistic approach? I have no idea if a sort of trial period is a sensible first approach?
     
  14. Essie

    Essie Registered User

    Feb 11, 2015
    566
    #14 Essie, Jan 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2016
    Hi Cazb, just a thought re you saying you would like to stay in the house and get yourself better and probs re cat & dog etc. could you not sell your flat to fund Dad's care?

    All the LA will say is that dad's assets exceed the self funding limit they won't care where the actual payment comes from just that payment has to be made.

    If Dad's care period continues for a long time obviously the funds from sale of flat might run out so then house would have to be sold but by then your own health might have improved and you could have thinned out possessions and dog and cat may no longer be around so you wouldn't then have the issue of re homing them.

    Not sure that would be the best option for care though if the homes near Dad's house are so poor and getting him the best care is obviously the most important factor - as others have said don't just go on appearances, shabby doesn't always mean shoddy and it is the staff that really matter not a smart 'reception area' or glossy brochure.

    I know also some people say to visit homes un-announced so that you can see them 'unprepared' but TBH I think that's pointless, make a proper appointment so that the manager, or whoever shows you round has actually scheduled the time to be with you and answer all your questions and really look and listen as you go round at how staff speak to and interact with the residents - do they hold hands and reassure, speak kindly etc. that's so much more important than how it looks.

    Edited to add, re a trial period, well that can be a good thing as it does explore the idea of full time residency without committing to it but also some people will take longer than a few weeks to adjust to being in a home so it may not be a true picture of how Dad will take to it.
     
  15. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    11,489
    Female
    London
    Do you own the Essex flat? Why don't you rent it out to get some money in? To be honest, as a power of attorney it's your responsibility to manage his financial affairs in his best interest, and staying in your Dad's house rent free doesn't seem like that. It's your Dad's house, he has the right to either receive rent on it or the proceeds from a sale funding the very best care for him. I'm not sure the pets and furniture argument would wash with Social Services, quite frankly. You have a home to go to, that's all they will see.
     
  16. tigerlady

    tigerlady Registered User

    Nov 29, 2015
    427
    Dear Caz

    This quote is taken from Pickles post

    The LA must offer at least one home placement which meets all your father's assessed needs and which does not require any 'top-up' fee from anyone else.

    Even if your father is assessed as self-funding, if he does not have more than £23,500 capital excluding the house there should be a 12-week disregard.


    As you said your father does not have more than £23.500, if your condition qualified for disregard of his property, then the LA would have to find you a home as above.

    If the house cannot be disregarded, then at least you have 12 weeks grace, and the LA must tell you about good affordable homes. As you have to have an operation soon, then I think trying for respite for that period might be better than trying to arrange permanent care in a rush. Also make sure he is getting the top rate of attendance allowance as that can go towards the home costs.

    Beate's suggestion of renting out your flat is also a good one if that - combined with your father's pension and attendance allowance could fund his care.

    As you say animals are not allowed in your flat, I assume that they are family ones that live with your father - is that right?

    There is a firm called Care Home Selection which I used when I was searching for a home for my husband, which is a free service.

    www.carehomeselection.co.uk

    It is a free service and I found them very helpful they can take some of the work away from you and give you a shortlist of homes to visit according to your fathers needs and circumstances.

    Hope this is helpful to you
     
  17. Essie

    Essie Registered User

    Feb 11, 2015
    566
    Jaymor that is the best summing up of CHC I have ever seen!
     
  18. Saffie

    Saffie Registered User

    Mar 26, 2011
    22,489
    Female
    Near Southampton
    The trouble is it doesn't always work that way! :(
     
  19. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,295
    Male
    North Manchester
    #19 nitram, Jan 9, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2016
    "CHC funding is given when medical needs are a priority over care needs."

    I think that should read

    CHC funding is given when medical needs as assessed by the NHS are a priority over care needs.

    Even then they have to be above a certain level.
     
  20. jaymor

    jaymor Volunteer Moderator

    Jul 14, 2006
    12,237
    Female
    England
    I will get it right one day:):):):)
     

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