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magic words for a quick social services assessment?


Registered User
Dec 29, 2013
My father in law was diagnosed with Alzheimer's two years ago, and we've been noticing a decline in his ability to cope. He lives by himself (we live 2.5 hour drive away and he has no other relatives) with carers stopping in a couple times a day. My husband went down today to take him to an appointment today and one of the neighbours took him aside and said that my FIL had been wandering in the streets at 4:30 with his medication in hand screaming for someone to help. The neighbour has apparently decided to sleep downstairs in order to keep an eye. We're so lucky he lives around such lovely people. We've decided it's for him to move into full-time care ASAP (my husband will spend tonight down there and probably much of this week as well). We have a care home picked out, but it's near us. I just spoke with the manager, and she said we would need to bring him in for an assessment (obviously difficult) or have social services in his city assess his needs. He hasn't seen the social worker in nearly two years, though we did have a care plan for him ages ago. Is there anything we can say to get the social services out to do another assessment quickly? I know that our initial assessment it took them six weeks to come out, and obviously we don't have that time at this point.

I think I've said this before, but I really appreciate all the time and patience and knowledge of people on this forum. What a blessing everyone here is!


Registered User
Jun 2, 2014
I had a similar situation with my parents in July. I moved them from South Wales to Buckinghamshire (near me)to a CH in a very short space of time.
I was lucky that the CH sent someone to Wales to assess my parents - the assessment was done within a week. You might want to ask if the CH you are considering for your Father has a relationship with any CH local to him who could carry out the assessment on their behalf if they can't travel to assess him themselves.
Social Services are harder to get going quicker. I didn't manage this and this was part of the reason the CH ended up doing it for me. You might be able to get a Social Worker out to him quickly by explaining the current situation and what has happened with neighbours etc and this would start the process but for some reason the assessment process seems to take a while to get into motion (I was told 16 weeks).

Good luck with it but I would ask the CH to help you if they can


Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
North Manchester
Magic words

Vulnerable adult at risk to himself and /or others.
Legal duty of care.
Hold responsible .

Tell neighbours to phone police if he is wandering and agitated again, a police report to SS will help sharpen their focus.


Volunteer Moderator
Jul 14, 2006
Give them a ring and tell them it is urgent. He has been found wandering in the early hours of the morning and use the magic words, vulnerable and at risk, because there is no one living close enough to control his wandering and confusion.

Keep at them every couple of days if they drag their feet.


Registered User
Dec 29, 2013
Thank you all so much. I'll try getting in touch with social services tomorrow and use those words. I'll call the care home tomorrow as well and ask if there are any other possibilities--maybe the local private care agency we use could do an assessment? I guess I'll just have to see.

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