If you don't have health power of attorney what can you do

Worriedniece

Registered User
Apr 8, 2017
4
I was my aunt's best friend and my brother and I are her only relative. she has Alzheimer's dementia but resists any form of help she can't use the oven or microwave, speech is very poor, no concept of times and dates if she has a doctor's appointment in a week's time she will go up every day until the right day comes we got carers in to give her one good meal a day but she keeps refusing the food saying she ate before they came in or is going out for lunch later and they say it's her choice. The doctor called social services in because he was so concerned with her loss of weight but Social Services say she has the capacity to decide what food she likes or not but has not got the capacity to implement her choices. She's had 3 meals in 10 days with the carers and just snacks on cakes & toast but I'm told it's her choice and SS Say as she's self-funding. I have power of attorney over her finances but not her health and now she doesn't want us in the house as she says were interfering. We pay all the bills and carers but neighbours keep phoning me saying they are worried about her but SS so she has capacity and now I can't go there although she constantly phones me up to complain about everything. We always planned that I would move there if necessary for a while and then she would move in with my brother and his wife but she doesn't want that now so I don't know what to do
 

Bod

Registered User
Aug 30, 2013
1,212
This sounds very much like my father, in his earlier days.
With regard to food, I had to write instructions to the Carers who were to make meals for him. "Prepare a meal for him, its his choice whether or not to eat it!" This was done to get around his "right" to choose.
It didn't take many days, before he was eating before the carer left.
Make sure that shopping is suitable for both carer and her.
Being self-funding, means SS won't be too interested.
Getting her to move to your brothers won't be agreed to, nor will a care home when the time comes.
There will be a time when you have to do, what you gotta do.
As for the GP, talk to them, they may be very relived to hear you, go with her to any appointments, that way you get known to the GP.
Stay strong.

Bod
 

RiffRaff

Registered User
Dec 3, 2016
7
Nottingham
I have health power of Attorney for my mother, but to be honest it doesn't give you much in the way of power. I had found a good nursing home place for my mother but she refused to go and, because of a recent court case, despite my believing it was in her best interests I could not make them take her into the home.
For your situation I would say that Social Services need to make an assessment of her need for her care, and if they assess that she needs care then they need to make an application for a welfare guardianship order, which will allow them to place her in care.
I know what you're going through, I have been through the same and it's immensely frustrating, but you need to keep batting it back to Social Services as it's their responsibility once she's assessed.
 

Worriedniece

Registered User
Apr 8, 2017
4
Thanks for your inputs

What I find hard is that ......if she would accept help she could stay in her own home longer which is what she wants....
 

Shedrech

Volunteer Moderator
Dec 15, 2012
8,491
Yorkshire
What I find hard is that ......if she would accept help she could stay in her own home longer which is what she wants....
sadly, Worriedniece, there's the rub all too often encountered by family and friends
unfortunately your aunt's brain has been damaged and compromised by the dementia and she is no longer able to reason - what she believes to be true IS the truth and reality for her and she just will not be able to see another point of view (imagine someone is telling you that you have odd shoes on but you checked when you put them on and when you look down at your feet you see a pair of shoes but that person is insisting what you see is wrong ... how would you feel and react?)
unfortunately, your aunt is not likely to easily accept help so you'll have to be devious and sneaky, which doesn't come naturally when dealing with another adult
do the carers leave out the meals they make, or clear away before they leave? - if the meal is left for her, she may well eat it after they've gone (I appreciate there are food safety issues, but it's a case of weighing up risks) - are there plenty of finger foods/snacks around so that she can find things to eat when she wants eg individually wrapped cakes, sandwiches, a full biscuit tin ... pots of yogurt, trifles ... smoothies, drinks in cartons ... packs of prepared fruit ... anything that will get some calories and nutrients into her
might you 'trick' her a little about moving in and ask for some help for a few nights as you have a problem where you are living - though this is a lot to take on, she will no doubt continue to be unco-operative and you will be there all the time with no let up - personally I'm not sure if this is a viable 'solution'
might you give the neighbours the LA's phone number and ask them to call every time they have a concern - and, if they are seriously worried, ask them to call the emergency services who will have to come out and also record their involvement; the police can also make their own referral to SS
do keep her GP up to date, sounds as though they are really concerned and will be an ally - they may not be able to discuss your aunt's situation with you but do have to note any concerns you raise
it's great that you and your brother are looking out for your aunt - you may just have to watch, wait for a crisis and be ready to step in then
best wishes
 

SnowWhite

Registered User
Nov 18, 2016
699
This is a very interesting discussion for me because I have health POA as well as property and finance for my mum.

I thought it would be sensible to do both but on reflection I can't see that it's worth having really.

Mum is in a care home and I have to keep on and on at them about what foods she likes, dislikes, or which she can't eat for health reasons.

Also the care home seem to call in the GP when she has something wrong but may not tell me until after the event which seems a bit odd.

Can somebody tell me what IS the point of the health part please?
 

PianoMike

Registered User
Mar 18, 2017
31
Hull
My Dad rejects big meals and has done for some time.

We have a tray which is frequently stacked with sausage rolls, chocolate, crisps and general party food.

I know this isn't a meal but he does fill up on this throughout the day. I think he likes the idea that he's discovered the food, rather than knowing someone has fed him. Also with frontal lobe dementia they develop a sweet tooth.
 

Lancashirelady

Registered User
Oct 7, 2014
110
Do the carers just make her something and leave her to it or encourage her to eat? My mum was a terror for living on biscuits and flushing hot meals down the toilet but was completely different if someone sat at the table with her, especially if they were eating as well. One carer used to bring her own sandwiches so that they could eat together and that usually worked. Now Mum is in a CH and sitting for meals with other residents she eats everything put in front of her!
 

mumbasi

Registered User
Sep 1, 2013
106
This is a very interesting discussion for me because I have health POA as well as property and finance for my mum.

I thought it would be sensible to do both but on reflection I can't see that it's worth having really.

Mum is in a care home and I have to keep on and on at them about what foods she likes, dislikes, or which she can't eat for health reasons.

Also the care home seem to call in the GP when she has something wrong but may not tell me until after the event which seems a bit odd.

Can somebody tell me what IS the point of the health part please?
Well SnowWhite, I have been thinking the exact same thing recently. Whenever I take my sister for appointments with Health Professionals, I feel so frustrated that they question, question, question her and when she is unable to respond look at me, and I feel so frustrated that they do not even understand that they are causing her to be stressed because she cannot understand what they are saying. This happened just two weeks ago when the Clinical specialist from the memory clinic came out to assess her. I thought he should have known better, but apparently they have to ask my sister the questions just to assess her deterioration. Then today the same thing happened when I took her for an MRI scan. They still have to ask her questions that she doesn't understand, just to satisfy themselves that they know that she doesn't understand. It is doing my head in I tell you. And today when I said I had LPA for health, they looked at me blankly and didn't even ask me what I was talking about.
On a positive note, they were really kind and caring and looked after her with exceptional kindness and caring. We will now have to wait and see whether she has early onset Alzheimers plus the FTD and if so she may benefit from anti Alzheimers medicine. Is that a good thing???