1. Our next Q&A session is on the topic of Christmas and dementia.This time we want our Q&A to involve our resident experts, you! Share tips and advice on navigating Christmas here in this thread.

    Pop by and post your questions or if you prefer you can email your question to us at talkingpoint@alzheimers.org.uk and we'll be happy to ask them on your behalf.
  1. Rog22

    Rog22 Registered User

    Oct 6, 2015
    My aunty is 92 and has just recently fallen. She went to a rehab unit via A&E, where they declared that she does not have capacity and have moved her into a BUPA dementia unit.
    The staff are ok but underpaid, under staffed & demoralised. The unit itself is pretty dilapidated, with safety bars falling off the walls in the bathrooms and it does smell strongly.
    I want to get her out of there as soon as possible, but we have to apply to COP for deputyship which I'm on with now.
    In the meantime, my partner & myself were thinking of looking after her at home. We are both retired paramedics so have plenty of experience medically. Our home isn't ideal as the bathroom is upstairs, but we could manage.
    Has anyone any experience of live-in carers? If we could get live in care for at least a few days a week, we could live more normal lives.
    Are there any resources to find a good carer?
  2. Witzend

    Witzend Registered User

    Aug 29, 2007
    SW London
    Medical experience is one thing, and certainly very useful, but would you be prepared for 24 hour dementia care, even if not seven days a week? Honestly, it is all too easy to under-estimate - grossly - just how hard and exhausting it can be, and I do speak from experience. Many others here would say the same. And unless you have a very large house, even with a live-in carer I think it would be hard not to be affected.

    If you are not happy with the current care home, my feeling would be to look for a better one. As many of us have found, there are some very good ones out there, and many people's relatives do extremely well in them.
  3. Beate

    Beate Registered User

    May 21, 2014
    Is she self-funding? Then you can choose any home you like. If not, input from Social Services will be required for any support. You could try Day Care, sitting service and/or carers coming into the house, but make no mistake, caring is still a full-time job and consists of personal care, medical care, financial administration, social interaction etc etc., not forgetting coping with the behavioural problems that come with dementia.
  4. Bod

    Bod Registered User

    Aug 30, 2013
    Good advice.
    Dementia care is very much more demanding, than pop em, on a stretcher, blue's an twos to A&E, hand em over, canteen cup of tea.

    A bit tongue in cheek!

  5. Rog22

    Rog22 Registered User

    Oct 6, 2015
    #5 Rog22, Oct 13, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2015
    Fair one.

    However, a bit insulting! The days of popping them on a stretcher, driving to A&E and getting a cup of tea stopped in the 70's. Even in those days, crews dealt with terrible things day in and day out. Trust me, those scenes and emotions and smells stay with you forever.

    The world has moved on!
  6. 2jays

    2jays Registered User

    Jun 4, 2010
    West Midlands
    24/7 care of someone with dementia doesn't move on. It becomes a mind numbing grind... No matter how much you love someone

    Think very long and hard with eyes wide open, without emotion, before you decide to move Aunty in with you

    Are you doing for Aunty or your guilt monster

    You couldn't pay any money on earth for me to become a paramedic :) hats off to you both xxxxx

    Sent from my iPhone using Talking Point
  7. sleepless

    sleepless Registered User

    Feb 19, 2010
    The Sweet North
    In fairness, maybe Bod was referring to the many such trips the elderly with dementia make in the ambulance?
    No doubting it's a gruelling job, grateful thanks to all who do it.
  8. Mannie

    Mannie Registered User

    Mar 13, 2014
    Bracknell area
    I have both parents with dementia. We helped them move close to us and then set up live-in care. What you need is for her GP to refer you to the local community psychiatric services and also to social services who will do an assessment to decide what help is needed. They will also advise of options available which will include care at home.

    The aftermath of illness is a different situation from the ongoing one she needs going forward so maybe bide time before deciding on the solution.

    Caring for an adult with dementia can be likened to caring for a young disabled child, one who may not sleep through the night, may be aggressive, may shout and be noisy, may be inco tenant , cannot be left alone, may be immobile. Think long and hard.

    Live in carers have to be given 8 hours sleep, so do not expect that a live in carer can be up all night . For that you need a waking night carer which is very very much more expensive. Carers are not allowed to lift patients on their own so you will need 2 carers for whenever lifting is needed.
  9. Rog22

    Rog22 Registered User

    Oct 6, 2015
    Thanks. We're looking into it as an option, though I fully appreciate that it would probably be the hardest work of my life.

    If we can find a really nice home for her, that would probably be better all round, it's just that in my experience, it's only a fraction that are good. The BUPA one that social services have put her in is pretty bad and we want to get her somewhere better as soon as possible.

    The trouble is that the good ones we've found have waiting lists, so we were thinking that we could look after her short term until a decent place becomes available.

    I must admit that I always used to say that I'd never want to go into a home or put anyone I knew into one because there were only maybe three in the area I was working that were nice. The others were pretty dire. Maybe the CQC has improved some. I'll keep on looking!

    Does anyone know average prices for dementia residential in the North West? I've seen prices ranging from £500/w to £1200/w with equally good reviews and CQC ratings. Is it best to go for the very best meaning that my aunties money runs out quicker, or go for a middle road where she could stay for longer? I understand that once her money runs out, the LA can move her to somewhere that they can afford.
  10. sistermillicent

    sistermillicent Registered User

    Jan 30, 2009
    This is not the only care home under that well known brand to be poor.
    I looked round the above one and thought it looked lovely, that was before it opened so I didn't meet staff. It was also extremely expensive.
    I looked round other desperately expensive places in a try to get mum the best place, but the staff were disinterested or let slip things that frankly worried me when I engaged them in apparently trivial conversation.
    She is now in a place which is cheaper and a lot less grand than anywhere else, but the staff are angels, the manager totally gets what dementia is about and how it impacts on a life partner or the family as well as the sufferer.
    So go round homes but don't look at the decor, it is only the staff who will make a difference to the residents. Don't rely on CQC reports either, anyone can make things look good for an inspection.
    If you want to get carers for a brief spell at your place I suggest asking on the website Streetlife, which will be local to you, and also getting church magazines and looking at the small ads.
    Incidentally I have had to call paramedics to several emergencies in my work and they have saved lives, their skills are amazing, and they've been friendly while doing it and on arrival at hospital are often treated like dirt by the staff, certainly no cups of tea. I could say more but will shut up now.
  11. ElizabethAnn

    ElizabethAnn Registered User

    Jan 4, 2014
    North Hampshire
    Hello Rog22,
    We have live in care from an agency for Mum & Dad. The agency is UK wide. The weekly rate for 2 is £924 - I think for 1 it was £837 - BUT that is the rate after 3 weeks.

    We initially introduced/sold it to Mum & Dad as just for a week (back in February!) and the individual weekly rate was much higher - I think more like £1500 per week for 2.

    So it would definitely pay to check out how long you need to employ them before the rate stabilises...

    I'll drop you a PM with the details of the agency we use. We've been very happy with them...

    Good luck.


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