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Thanks to Dementia UK & Alzheimers UK for asking for visits to care homes(COVID19)

April100

Registered User
Nov 13, 2016
13
I am one ( of very many) who will be hoping that the government takes notice of the request to allow certain people to visit their relatives in a care home as a 'key worker'.

My experience is that having cared for my 97 year old mother (mixed dementia/alzheimer's) 24/7 for the past 7 years, she had a fall two weeks ago and broke her hip. She was taken to hospital (no visits allowed) and had an operation. A couple of days later she was moved to a small local hospital (no visits allowed)l. This confused her very much. One time when I rang her she was sobbing so hard she couldn't talk.

She doesn't have capacity to make decisions for herself, I have LPA. Her short term memory is almost non existent. She doesn't remember the fall, the operation, no real understanding of coronavius or where she is.

From the small local hospital she has been transferred to a care home (no visits allowed) for a short term stay so that her care needs can be assessed and also her mental capacity.

All this is very understandable by me. However, my mother doesn't understand. She's in a room with not much to see out of the window, as a new arrival in the home she will be in isolation except for carers. When I phone, she says she is 'looking at four walls'. Of course, I have dropped off books, photos, flowers etc at the care home and I phone daily ( she doesn't hear well so that is not always successful). I am sure she is safe and well cared for. However, I am the only person my mother has, she is used to seeing me every day. How is she to understand where she is in an unfamiliar place with unfamiliar people? What goes through her mind?
 

DaveCr1968

Registered User
Jul 5, 2020
43
Hi there

I'm in a position where residential care is pretty much inevitable for my dad. I have been talking to one of my mum's friends who used to be a care home inspector before she retired. She says that because of the professional care and routine, they tend to settle in quite quickly.

I'm very nervous about putting dad into care now for the same reasons as you and not being able to visit. At least you have the LPA; we've missed that particular boat.

Regards

Dave
 

April100

Registered User
Nov 13, 2016
13
Hi there

I'm in a position where residential care is pretty much inevitable for my dad. I have been talking to one of my mum's friends who used to be a care home inspector before she retired. She says that because of the professional care and routine, they tend to settle in quite quickly.

I'm very nervous about putting dad into care now for the same reasons as you and not being able to visit. At least you have the LPA; we've missed that particular boat.

Regards

Dave
Good luck, Dave
I'll be honest here - I was able to sit with my mother today (outside, distanced and with a mask). To begin with she doesn't hear well so muffled speech through a mask is difficult. She was upset and said she doesn't want to be in a care home - she knows she is safe and well cared for there - she wants to be at home. That's the truth - however, she puts on a good front and I am sure the staff think she is 'settling'. My mother has accepted she has to be there at the moment. She doesn't know where she is or why she is there. I found it so hard .

I visited a few care homes in January as I was looking for day care for my mother and the possibility of a week's break for me. That came to a screeching halt with coronavirus. Do you know that you can look up reports on the CQC website? Having been a teacher, I don't take inspection reports as totally accurate but it's a good starting point. I have found other carer's experience of care homes useful.

I have to wait until the care needs assessment has been done, to know if my mother can return home or if Social Services recommend a care home.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,856
South coast
Do you know which home your mum wants to go back to @April100 ?

The reason I ask is that when mum first moved into her care home (a few years ago now) she was packing every night to "go home". I once took her back to her home - a complete disaster as she did not recognise it as her home and got really distressed because she was frightened that the owners would come back and find us. After that I asked her what her home was like and discovered that she was thinking about her childhood home.

I now know that this desire to "go home" is almost universal in dementia and represents a state of mind rather than an actual place. What mum was really wanting was to to go somewhere where she felt safe and could leave the confusions of dementia behind. Once mum settled she stopped asking to go home and became happy in her care home.
 

DaveCr1968

Registered User
Jul 5, 2020
43
Good luck, Dave
I'll be honest here - I was able to sit with my mother today (outside, distanced and with a mask). To begin with she doesn't hear well so muffled speech through a mask is difficult. She was upset and said she doesn't want to be in a care home - she knows she is safe and well cared for there - she wants to be at home. That's the truth - however, she puts on a good front and I am sure the staff think she is 'settling'. My mother has accepted she has to be there at the moment. She doesn't know where she is or why she is there. I found it so hard .

I visited a few care homes in January as I was looking for day care for my mother and the possibility of a week's break for me. That came to a screeching halt with coronavirus. Do you know that you can look up reports on the CQC website? Having been a teacher, I don't take inspection reports as totally accurate but it's a good starting point. I have found other carer's experience of care homes useful.

I have to wait until the care needs assessment has been done, to know if my mother can return home or if Social Services recommend a care home.
Thanks, the dementia people were made aware that mum had passed away and have contacted me a couple of times mainly to make sure I am ok. I am struggling at the moment and they seem to be accelerating things.

I've not had chance to consider any care homes and won't accept him being dumped anywhere. I'm lucky to have an ex-inspector helping me but one that would take his cat would be ideal.

My dad wants to go home every night, even though he is in his own house. The reason is because he grew up in this house and he did a major refurbishment over 20 years ago. He simply does not recognise it and remembers it from when he was a child.

Hope it goes well with your mum. I feel less guilty about putting dad into care; I remembered a conversation with mum about 6 months ago where we discussed about dad not being able to look after himself and when she was taken into hospital 2 weeks ago today, the first thing she wanted was for me to come down and look after dad.

I'm taking legal advice about my dad and not having a LPA. The joint bank account goes to him but he doesn't have the capability to use it.
 

DaveCr1968

Registered User
Jul 5, 2020
43
she did not recognise it as her home and got really distressed because she was frightened that the owners would come back and find us.
Hi Canary

That is very similar to my dad. Sat in his own living room a few nights ago, he was worried about the police coming because we were intruders.

Dave
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,856
South coast
I'm taking legal advice about my dad and not having a LPA. The joint bank account goes to him but he doesn't have the capability to use it.
If he no longer has the capacity to grant POA you will have to apply to the Court of Protection for deputyship
 

DaveCr1968

Registered User
Jul 5, 2020
43
Thanks for that, it is something I am looking at. I'm executor of mum's will, which gives me some power.
 

DaveCr1968

Registered User
Jul 5, 2020
43
Which will only come into action once she dies. It doesnt give you the authority to manage her accounts while she is still alive.
Ah, mum passed away last Thursday. The deputyship will be for my dad. Mum did not have dementia and was as sharp as a pin; one of the reasons she didn't want the LPA for dad a few years ago.
 

canary

Registered User
Feb 25, 2014
12,856
South coast
Sorry - I was slightly confused there. And Im sorry to hear about your mum
It will still only allow you to deal with her finances, not your dads so if a joint account goes directly to your dad you wont have access, and once probate is complete your power will cease.

You really will have to get either POA or deputyship.
 

Lynmax

Registered User
Nov 1, 2016
505
The care home my mum recently went to does allow pets by arrangement and with certain conditions. In fact, while I was visiting mum this afternoon ( in a gazebo in the gardens) I spotted a cat strolling out of a door, followed by a resident, followed by a carer! The cat belongs to the resident and just wanders around the home but the lady gets upset if it goes outside without her - and also gets a bit jealous of the fuss and attention given by other residents!