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  • FIRST POST
    • gundo
    • By gundo 15th Oct 16, 10:00 PM
    • 194Posts
    • 64Thanks
    gundo
    Carers running up massive bills using Mum's phone to log in!
    • #1
    • 15th Oct 16, 10:00 PM
    Carers running up massive bills using Mum's phone to log in! 15th Oct 16 at 10:00 PM
    My elderly mother has carers popping into see her twice a day every day as medicine prompt and help with prepping food etc. The carers are employed by an agency that provides the service to my Mum's local authority. My Mum's had carers visiting her for over 10 years.

    Anyway since the new carers company took over (the previous company lost the contract with the local authority) every time a carer arrives at my Mum's they use her phone to call the office to "log in" i.e. indicate that they've arrived to their agency.

    I hadn't realised until very recently that these calls were costing a fortune, I'd stupidly assumed that they must be calling a 0800 number (in fact I'm sure I have a vague recollection that one of the carers told me this when I queried them about using the phone). They're calling a landline from my Mum's BT phone line during the week and the calls can last up to 10 minutes!

    My Mum's BT bill is higher than mine and she very rarely uses her phone except to call me occasionally. She has the lowest tariff they do and I have fibre internet and "all the toys".

    Even just looking at only the itemised calls (the ones costing more than 40p) the vast majority of them are the carers logging in.

    The care service user's manual (which I've only just looked at) states that the carer must never use the "service user's" phone except in emergencies and not for logging in.

    My question is: what do I do to prevent this "abuse"?

    I rang the number that featured the most and because it was this afternoon I got put through to the out of hours service of the carer's company. The person I spoke to basically fobbed me off and was very cagey. They wouldn't even divulge an email address of someone I could contact regarding this (I asked for the manager of the carers).

    How do I tackle this problem and who do I escalate this to?

    I think it's an absolute scandal! My Mum's phone bill Direct Debit has gone up from approximately £17 a month if that, to over £37 a month and she almost never uses the phone herself
    Trying hard to be a good moneysaver.
Page 3
    • missprice
    • By missprice 17th Oct 16, 2:59 PM
    • 3,059 Posts
    • 71,818 Thanks
    missprice
    A lot of mobile phones now have GPS, so very easy to send your location via most messaging services. WhatsApp allows you to send a map showing your location.
    Originally posted by silvercar
    Only any use if the call plan you have includes internet or you actually have some crefit on your phone. as WhatsApp and gps need internet connection.

    Also trackers can be used but they ain't free to install, and most carers I know are on min wage.
    94 mortgage payments to go.

    Zero wins 2016 😥
    • mumps
    • By mumps 17th Oct 16, 3:26 PM
    • 5,425 Posts
    • 11,288 Thanks
    mumps
    Hmm, sounds like all you would get is proof that they are on the phone and not necessarily that they are caring for your relative.
    Originally posted by silvercar
    At least I would know they were in the building and I know in this particular case they would be engaging with her as she wouldn't give them any option.
    Sell £1500

    2831.00/£1500
    • Spendless
    • By Spendless 17th Oct 16, 8:10 PM
    • 18,979 Posts
    • 30,500 Thanks
    Spendless
    At least I would know they were in the building and I know in this particular case they would be engaging with her as she wouldn't give them any option.
    Originally posted by mumps
    Before she went into a care home, my Grandmother had Carers in twice a day. They had a do a write up in a book, that was left at my Gran's house. Things like, gave medication, prepared dinner etc. So you'd always know that they had been in the house.
    • Jamiesmum
    • By Jamiesmum 17th Oct 16, 8:29 PM
    • 310 Posts
    • 364 Thanks
    Jamiesmum
    Before she went into a care home, my Grandmother had Carers in twice a day. They had a do a write up in a book, that was left at my Gran's house. Things like, gave medication, prepared dinner etc. So you'd always know that they had been in the house.
    Originally posted by Spendless
    Yeah but what if they hadn't been? Calling in flags it up to the office that no one has been, then they chase up who + why. Or even if they've forgot to record in writing.

    Yes it 'has' to be done - but daily record sheets aren't regularly checked by anyone other than carers. Infact, it's more for social services / CQC or in poor health/death so they can be read. Say she fell in and paramedics came, they could look + see what meds she has had that day and when etc.
    • Spendless
    • By Spendless 17th Oct 16, 10:22 PM
    • 18,979 Posts
    • 30,500 Thanks
    Spendless
    Yeah but what if they hadn't been? Calling in flags it up to the office that no one has been, then they chase up who + why. Or even if they've forgot to record in writing.

    Yes it 'has' to be done - but daily record sheets aren't regularly checked by anyone other than carers. Infact, it's more for social services / CQC or in poor health/death so they can be read. Say she fell in and paramedics came, they could look + see what meds she has had that day and when etc.
    Originally posted by Jamiesmum
    In my Grandmother's case, they were because we would read them when we called. I realise that isn't the case for the OP, but I was making the point that there is a documented record of getting a daily call not that you can park up and sit in your car and not go in (as has been suggested). If the write up was missing, that would be seen by the next lot of carers to go in.
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