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sucessful admission to a care home during covid restrictions...

Lyd

Registered User
May 27, 2019
84
Hi after much agonsing we made the desision to move MIL to a residential home. Her behaviour challenging without covid became even more difficult when her community was removed from her and with no concept of social distancing she risked herself on others on each of her frequent trips out of the house. I took her because none of her sons were able too/willing too.
It was tough but effective and i followed and adapted the advice of others in the forum which was really helpful. thank you
i thought i would share what worked:
1. I made sure my family got nice goodbye time but not too obvious (we are her carers to basically isolating as a two house household).
2. It is a private home and had a hotel vibe and lovely planting up to the door which i maximised. I told her I had seen some beautiful flowers and i was taking her to see them 48 hours before and then mentioned intermitantly adding a cup of tea in the hotel...
2. I showed her photos of a fantastic hotel I wanted to go to near by (images of the room she was having and from the website a couple of times in the days leading up to it). This worked because on the day she said I think I know this place.
2. I did a reccy to work out where i would park and walk through the plan.
3. I told the staff exactly what i would do. The manager agreed to meet us without a mask on.
4. I left some chocolates and fruit for the room (i felt better when staff said shed eaten all her banana's!!!)
5. We spent 4 minutes walking up the path admiring the flowers. As we approached the door I let her go ahead of me. As she crossed the threshold I remembered I had left my bag in the car the manager offered her a cup of tea and a sandwich while i ran back.
6. I left a letter in her room very short but saying she needed to stay in to be safe (unheaded message of the last 8 weeks!) this was a good place and i loved her and would come as soon as it is safe.
The hardest bit... not being able to hug her goodbye (it would totally have given the game away).
One chapter ends the next starts....
 

Sarasa

Registered User
Apr 13, 2018
1,870
Hi @Lyd, that seems an object lesson on how to move someone to a care home. I wish I'd thought of that last year with my mum. Instead it was traumantic for both of us.
Hope your MiL settles quickly, the banana eating seems a good sign, and that you will be able to visit properly soon. Then I guess you'll have to come up with some more creative love lies as to why she is staying.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,474
That sounds lovely. My mum's care home have said that they won't admit anyone who has not tested negative for covid-19 and have published a new admissions process which involves the new resident remaining in a car whilst staff conduct a pre-admission interview and take a finger prick blood test. They then have to wait in the care for around 20 minutes for a test result and if the resident is negative they will be admitted straight away (into an 'isolation suite') but if positive they won't. I can't imagine how that process is going to work well for those with dementia and their families :(
 

White Rose

Registered User
Nov 4, 2018
679
Hi after much agonsing we made the desision to move MIL to a residential home. Her behaviour challenging without covid became even more difficult when her community was removed from her and with no concept of social distancing she risked herself on others on each of her frequent trips out of the house. I took her because none of her sons were able too/willing too.
It was tough but effective and i followed and adapted the advice of others in the forum which was really helpful. thank you
i thought i would share what worked:
1. I made sure my family got nice goodbye time but not too obvious (we are her carers to basically isolating as a two house household).
2. It is a private home and had a hotel vibe and lovely planting up to the door which i maximised. I told her I had seen some beautiful flowers and i was taking her to see them 48 hours before and then mentioned intermitantly adding a cup of tea in the hotel...
2. I showed her photos of a fantastic hotel I wanted to go to near by (images of the room she was having and from the website a couple of times in the days leading up to it). This worked because on the day she said I think I know this place.
2. I did a reccy to work out where i would park and walk through the plan.
3. I told the staff exactly what i would do. The manager agreed to meet us without a mask on.
4. I left some chocolates and fruit for the room (i felt better when staff said shed eaten all her banana's!!!)
5. We spent 4 minutes walking up the path admiring the flowers. As we approached the door I let her go ahead of me. As she crossed the threshold I remembered I had left my bag in the car the manager offered her a cup of tea and a sandwich while i ran back.
6. I left a letter in her room very short but saying she needed to stay in to be safe (unheaded message of the last 8 weeks!) this was a good place and i loved her and would come as soon as it is safe.
The hardest bit... not being able to hug her goodbye (it would totally have given the game away).
One chapter ends the next starts....
What a caring person you are and I hope your MIL understands the situation and is happy in her new home.
 

Lyd

Registered User
May 27, 2019
84
That sounds lovely. My mum's care home have said that they won't admit anyone who has not tested negative for covid-19 and have published a new admissions process which involves the new resident remaining in a car whilst staff conduct a pre-admission interview and take a finger prick blood test. They then have to wait in the care for around 20 minutes for a test result and if the resident is negative they will be admitted straight away (into an 'isolation suite') but if positive they won't. I can't imagine how that process is going to work well for those with dementia and their families :(
we did pre admission over the phone. she is meant to be in isolation for 14 days (they dont routinely test none symptomatic people) however i expressed secepticism that this would work!!!! and strongly recomended they test her. which they did, so just "isolation suite" until the results come back (its the nose and throat swab).
they informed us last night that they have applied for emergency DoLS which they would have needed to do anyway because she was never going to stay voluntarily. my big worry was if she refused to walk in to the building in the first place.
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,474
Sounds similar to mum's home - new residents will remain in the 'isolation suite' for 14 days, and after 10 days they do the swab test even if the blood test was negative. If negative they are moved out of the 'suite' but if positive they remain there until testing negative. At the moment existing residents appear to be in isolation too, pending their test results, so I'm hoping that mum will be able to leave her room soon! Hope your mum settles in well, it sounds like a lovely home :)
 

Banjomansmate

Registered User
Jan 13, 2019
2,212
Dorset
Well done Lyd, carefully thought out plan and perfectly executed. Give yourself a pat on the back and enjoy a glass/cup of whatever suits you best. Oh, and put your feet up for a day or two and enjoy a little rest.
 

Helly68

Registered User
Mar 12, 2018
747
That sounds as though it went as well as it could, your preparation was great. It is interesting, no one would want to do transition this way, but I found things went a bit sideways when I said goodbye to Mummy, when we first left her full time, and she picked up on my upset. Had I not done this, things might actually have been easier.
I hope @Lyd that you get a bit of time to yourself. These things are stressful for all concerned.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,967
Kent
Well done. @Lyd 🙂

Thanks for posting. You will have given good ideas to many others who are agonising about residential care.
 

Metalpetal

Registered User
May 10, 2020
114
It sounds like you approached this perfectly @Lyd - what a caring DIL you are :) It was very useful reading, and I’ll make sure I remember this post in case we find ourselves in the same situation (v possible). Out of interest, how did you manage to select a care home? Did they let you visit for a recce?? I’d have assumed it was a bit tricky to do so during these Covid times :-/
 

marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,161
Scotland
Almost two weeks ago my SIL had to be moved to a care home as lockdown had robbed her of her support network and she couldn’t cope. Neither could her neighbours as she wouldn’t stop wandering and knocking them up in the middle of the night.

I had no choice in the home as most would not accept any new residents. Social services found two which would take her and as it turned out the choice was excellent. She was tested for the virus before admission and packed her own bag (!). Next day I went with the bag she should have packed.

Two of her neighbours went with her and she assumed she was on holiday especially as the building and grounds look like a hotel.

They tell me she is settled and enjoying her food but is isolated for two weeks. Fingers crossed.
 

Lyd

Registered User
May 27, 2019
84
It sounds like you approached this perfectly @Lyd - what a caring DIL you are :) It was very useful reading, and I’ll make sure I remember this post in case we find ourselves in the same situation (v possible). Out of interest, how did you manage to select a care home? Did they let you visit for a recce?? I’d have assumed it was a bit tricky to do so during these Covid times :-/
really fortunately we had looked round before covid and so seen the inside also had recomendations from people locally. no recce post covid. however when we did decide they sent us pictures of the avaiable bedrooms and i got them to show me the 2 rooms from the outside which was useful because one overlooked fields and the other the main road.
i wonder if you could get a zoom tour? or ask to speak to relatives or residents?
 

Lyd

Registered User
May 27, 2019
84
Almost two weeks ago my SIL had to be moved to a care home as lockdown had robbed her of her support network and she couldn’t cope. Neither could her neighbours as she wouldn’t stop wandering and knocking them up in the middle of the night.

I had no choice in the home as most would not accept any new residents. Social services found two which would take her and as it turned out the choice was excellent. She was tested for the virus before admission and packed her own bag (!). Next day I went with the bag she should have packed.

Two of her neighbours went with her and she assumed she was on holiday especially as the building and grounds look like a hotel.

They tell me she is settled and enjoying her food but is isolated for two weeks. Fingers crossed.
Sounds like it worked well for you too, how lovely that she could pack her own bag. Heres hoping they both come to enjoy it.
 

marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,161
Scotland
Sounds like it worked well for you too, how lovely that she could pack her own bag. Heres hoping they both come to enjoy it.
The staff smiled at me when I handed her bag in at the door the following day. They didn’t make too much of the miscellany she had packed except to say there were an awful lot of pants.
 

Jayne M

Registered User
May 1, 2020
33
Hi after much agonsing we made the desision to move MIL to a residential home. Her behaviour challenging without covid became even more difficult when her community was removed from her and with no concept of social distancing she risked herself on others on each of her frequent trips out of the house. I took her because none of her sons were able too/willing too.
It was tough but effective and i followed and adapted the advice of others in the forum which was really helpful. thank you
i thought i would share what worked:
1. I made sure my family got nice goodbye time but not too obvious (we are her carers to basically isolating as a two house household).
2. It is a private home and had a hotel vibe and lovely planting up to the door which i maximised. I told her I had seen some beautiful flowers and i was taking her to see them 48 hours before and then mentioned intermitantly adding a cup of tea in the hotel...
2. I showed her photos of a fantastic hotel I wanted to go to near by (images of the room she was having and from the website a couple of times in the days leading up to it). This worked because on the day she said I think I know this place.
2. I did a reccy to work out where i would park and walk through the plan.
3. I told the staff exactly what i would do. The manager agreed to meet us without a mask on.
4. I left some chocolates and fruit for the room (i felt better when staff said shed eaten all her banana's!!!)
5. We spent 4 minutes walking up the path admiring the flowers. As we approached the door I let her go ahead of me. As she crossed the threshold I remembered I had left my bag in the car the manager offered her a cup of tea and a sandwich while i ran back.
6. I left a letter in her room very short but saying she needed to stay in to be safe (unheaded message of the last 8 weeks!) this was a good place and i loved her and would come as soon as it is safe.
The hardest bit... not being able to hug her goodbye (it would totally have given the game away).
One chapter ends the next starts....
Brilliant! Caring and successful. Xx
 

Deemus

New member
Oct 21, 2019
8
Thank you very much Lyd.

Mum is late middle stage and wont accept any help from carers, they still turn up but are unable to assist. The incontinence is now a major issue and I can no longer cope. Being of the very stubborn type, she is unwilling to use continence aids and has told me once that she would rather be dead than wear incontinence pads.

I am visting mum's GP tomorrow and asking him for a recommendation (with mum coming along for a regular checkup). I know its my responsibility to put mum into a care home, but am struggling to do so without some formal confirmation.

Is anyone here able to give me a quick summary on the following.
How long after should I make the first visit?
How frequent should the visits be?

Thanks to everyone!
 

Louise7

Registered User
Mar 25, 2016
2,474
There are no 'rules' in relation to visits. Some homes recommend not visiting for the first week or so to allow the person to settle in, and get used to the staff and the routines. Family didn't visit mum for the first week when she went into a home but that was due to other commitments rather than a deliberate decision to stay away. We were lucky, and mum settled in quickly, but it can often take some time to settle so the care staff may offer suggestions with regards to how often to visit. At the moment lockdown is still in place, so visits are restricted. My mum's home are just about to restart visits but only in the garden and at a designated time, and at the moment they haven't finalised details such as how long the visits will be for or how often. You may find that the GP won't provide 'formal confirmation' that your mum needs a care home but you could also request a care needs assessment from the local authority if you feel that you need assurance that you are doing the right thing. Your mum's needs are greater than you can cope with though, and she won't accept carers, so you are making the best decision in terms of her care and safety. It's not an easy decision to make, but hope things go well for your mum in her new home.
 

MrsV

Registered User
Apr 16, 2018
189
Northamptonshire
Thank you very much Lyd.

Mum is late middle stage and wont accept any help from carers, they still turn up but are unable to assist. The incontinence is now a major issue and I can no longer cope. Being of the very stubborn type, she is unwilling to use continence aids and has told me once that she would rather be dead than wear incontinence pads.

I am visting mum's GP tomorrow and asking him for a recommendation (with mum coming along for a regular checkup). I know its my responsibility to put mum into a care home, but am struggling to do so without some formal confirmation.

Is anyone here able to give me a quick summary on the following.
How long after should I make the first visit?
How frequent should the visits be?

Thanks to everyone!
Hi Deemus,
Our Mum was admitted as an emergency beginning April during lockdown, as she was wandering and putting herself and others at risk not understanding social distancing covid etc. no testing was carried out. Prior to that she was having carers 3 x daily with us visiting in the evening for an hour or so. We work full time, as essential workers so unable to stay there with her. or be full time carers, plus isolating ourselves with our own household. Other than a few phone calls we haven't actually seen Mum. Were awaiting her care plan and what happens next.
Sounds like it worked well for you too, how lovely that she could pack her own bag. Heres hoping they both come to enjoy it.
 

Sirena

Registered User
Feb 27, 2018
2,294
@Lyd thank you for posting - it sounds as if MIL's admission to the care home really could not have gone better, you planned it perfectly. I know what you mean about worrying if she'd go through the front door - same here! For my mother, we positioned it similarly to you, a hotel for a mini break, we arrived at lunchtime and she seemed to accept it (this was in non-corona times though of course).

@Deemus if your mother does go into a care home shortly, you won't be able to visit at all. Care homes have not been accepting visitors since lockdown (my mother's care home locked down on 13 March). As far as I know there is as yet no word on when they will start accepting visitors again. I hope you find the right care home for her.