1. Expert Q&A: Benefits - Weds 23 October, 3-4pm

    Our next expert Q&A will be on the topic of benefits. It will be hosted by Lauren from our Knowledge Services team. She'll be answering your questions on Wednesday 23 October between 3-4pm.

    You can either post your question >here< or email them to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.

  1. jstmcm

    jstmcm Registered User

    Apr 19, 2012
    48
    We are reaching the point where I believe my mother may have to go into a home, but I also know that she will be totally against it, and thinking of DOLS I am not sure what the Powers That Be will regard as in her best interests. I have Power of Attorney and want my mother to be happy, but also have to think about her long-term best interests.

    Mum is currently still in her own home, with 24 hour live-in care which she has to self-fund. She is paying around £1,000 per week for this. My first choice care home for her will charge around £1,200 pw. When we add in the running costs of Mum's own house we feel it comes to much the same as living in the care home.

    The problem is that Mum has now started getting up in the middle of the night, thinking it is morning at 2.00 a.m. etc. Any day now we expect to be told that we will need to pay for a second, waking night carer, to look after her at night. At that point the cost of her care at her own house will be around £2,000 per week - much more expensive than a care home (and outrageous that she should have to pay all that herself when she is ill, but that is another issue). Whilst she has the money in the bank then she could afford it, but of course the money will run out twice as fast - and then what happens?

    I know that eventually Mum will have to go into a care home. She is currently in mid-stage Alzheimers, has difficulty understanding anything people say to her and we have great difficulty making sense of things she says, although she talks to herself continuously. Only things that are of extreme emotional impact seem to get through - such as the suggestion of leaving her home. However, physically she is as fit as a fiddle and on no medication at all. (Even came off the dementia meds as she refused to take them and doctor said there was no point in continuing to try as it only caused distress to her and carers.)

    I have chosen a care home which is excellent, and I believe that Mum would be well cared for there, and could be happy. She tried it for a month last year and was always very happily occupied when I arrived, but always ended up saying she wanted to go home. It is only 10 minutes from my home, so I could see her every day, whereas she is currently 100 miles away from me.

    Obviously I have no idea how long Mum will live, but my hope is that if she was paying for the care home her money might last long enough for her to stay for the rest of her life. If she stayed at home and the money was spent twice as fast, there is a very good chance that she would run out of money. The LA would not fund her to remain at home, so she would then have to go into a CH of the LA's choosing, or if she was already in the home I have chosen, she would have to move as the LA would not fund it.

    Sorry this is so long-winded, but my question is, would a Best Interests meeting consider that the crippling cost of keeping Mum in her own home be an acceptable reason for moving her to a care home, even if she says she wants to stay at home?
     
  2. fizzie

    fizzie Registered User

    Jul 20, 2011
    2,739
    I have no direct experience but my understanding is that they look at all the factors - you living 100 miles away, crippling costs etc etc

    As you have PoA you are in a good position to put a clear case forward for your mum to live closer to you. Is she considered to have capacity at this stage?

    On a personal level it sounds as though you have made a great choice with the care home - especially if she was happy there for a month and you can see her daily. I do hope that you get a good result. Others will be able to advise you on the ins and outs of these meetings and the best way to approach them.

    Good luck xxx
     
  3. jstmcm

    jstmcm Registered User

    Apr 19, 2012
    48
     
  4. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    19,039
    Male
    North Manchester
    Assume your POA is health and welfare.

    Other than in exceptional circumstances you would be the decision maker if a best interests meeting were called.

    Unless there is contention from other parties a formal best interests meeting is unlikely.

    The best interests concerned are those of your mum's health and well-being. If she deteriorates to the extent that in your considered opinion residential care is needed and you propose to place her in a self funding capacity in a care home near you which meets her medical requirements and enables frequent visits from yourself I don't think any body would object.

    If you mum objects a formal assessment of her capacity to make that decision would have to be made, this could lead to a best interests meeting which could be just a formality.
     
  5. jstmcm

    jstmcm Registered User

    Apr 19, 2012
    48

    Many thanks for your reply. Yes, I do have the health & welfare PoA, as well as the financial one. It is reassuring to know that it should be OK. I am going to speak to her GP tomorrow, to explain the situation and ask if he agrees that we should move Mum into care. He seems to be understanding.
     

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