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Help for my neighbour

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My neighbour's health is deteriorating rapidly and I really think she needs 24/7 care.  She probably needs to go into a nursing home but is adamant that she does not want to be "amongst old people"  (She is 97)
She has limited means so would probably qualify for council support.  Would they fund 24 hour care or tell her she needs to go into a home?
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  • Robin9
    Robin9 Posts: 12,218 Forumite
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    Does she have a social worker ?   What care does she get at the moment ? Does she own her home or rent ?
    Never pay on an estimated bill. Always read and understand your bill
  • Candycane19700
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    No she doesnt have a social worker.  She owns her own home and the only care she gets is a friend of hers (also elderly) and me popping in.  I dont think she gets any benefits except OAP.
  • KxMx
    KxMx Posts: 10,643 Forumite
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    edited 26 July 2022 at 10:18PM
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    If you are concerned then please contact local social services.
    As she owns her own home that would be taken into account when a financial assessment is done. 
    They are unlikely to fund a residential home when the lady has the means to fund herself.
  • Savvy_Sue
    Savvy_Sue Posts: 46,254 Forumite
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    This is a tricky one, because as long as she retains capacity, she should be allowed to make her own decisions (to stay in her own home or to go into a nursing home). Her decisions do not need to be 'sensible' in anyone else's eyes. And I do remember half watching an episode of one of those 'let's follow an ambulance crew' programmes, where they were being called multiple times each day to assist an elderly couple where the wife was bed-bound and the husband was unable to move or lift her. So every time she slipped down the bed between the visits from carers and wanted to be sat up more, they dialled 999. The GP talked to her about how much care she needed and how much easier it would be to give that care in a residential setting, but she was adamant that she was not leaving her home. 

    It may be that you and the other friend need to put your heads together and suggest to your neighbour that she does need more help than the pair of you can give her, and suggest that she should speak to her GP about what help is available. Is it declining health, with medical problems making life difficult, or decreasing mobility? The GP could refer her to Occupational Health, for example, if there are aids and adaptations which would make the house safer for her. 

    It's highly unusual for the local authority to arrange 24/7 care for someone at home, and if she doesn't have the means to pay for her own care then there almost certainly would be a 'take it or leave it' offer of care visits 4 times a day, or residential care. That would be initiated by a referral to Social Services, and her income would be examined, with the house being taken into account. Equally, someone might help her apply for Attendance Allowance and Pension Credit - if she only has her state pension she would almost certainly be entitled to the latter. 

    My view - FWIW and whether or not I take my own advice when I get to that age remains to be seen - is that if it's clear 24/7 care WILL be required, it's better to get into it sooner rather than later, while one still has some autonomy and mobility, if you like. If you wait until you're unable to stand / transfer yourself from bed to chair / get yourself to and from the toilet and a care home is then forced upon you, at that stage you are going to struggle to make new friends / avoid the old people / have much choice about where you go. Pretending otherwise does our families and friends no favours. 
    Signature removed for peace of mind
  • Candycane19700
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    A girl I went to school with has a daughter with very bad cerebral palsy. She is around 30.   She is unable to work (ever) but has recently moved into a flat of her own and has a team of carers.  I am presuming that this is all paid for by the LA..
    Are the rules different when you are younger?  I was assuming my neighbour could also access that support.  I was going to get a social worker but I wanted to do some research first.
  • KxMx
    KxMx Posts: 10,643 Forumite
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    edited 27 July 2022 at 10:21AM
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    https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/social-care-and-support-guide/money-work-and-benefits/when-the-council-might-pay-for-your-care/

    https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/care/paying-for-care/

    There is support available but everyone is subject to a financial assessment following a needs assessment. Your friend's daughter will have gone through the same process.
     
  • Albermarle
    Albermarle Posts: 23,061 Forumite
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    A girl I went to school with has a daughter with very bad cerebral palsy. She is around 30.   She is unable to work (ever) but has recently moved into a flat of her own and has a team of carers.  I am presuming that this is all paid for by the LA..
    Are the rules different when you are younger?  I was assuming my neighbour could also access that support.  I was going to get a social worker but I wanted to do some research first.
    Most likely the girl has no significant assets. Probably the flat is rented. In which case the LA will pay.
    Your neighbour owns an asset ( her house and maybe some savings ?) so she will have to pay. If she is still living in the house, she will not have to sell it, but the council will recoup the money from the sale of the house after she has died/gone into residential care permanently.
  • Candycane19700
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    I might be wrong, but I don’t think the neighbour has much in the way of assets tbf.  We live on quite a rough council estate, and she has bought her council house.   If it was worth £50k I would be astonished.
    Would the council not be entitled to tell both to my neighbour and school friend’s daughter as it would be cheaper for them?
  • comeandgo
    comeandgo Posts: 5,765 Forumite
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    If she does not want help there is very little you can do.  A friend of mine, also in her nineties and nearly totally blind, social services visited a few times but she always showed them the door and refused any help or interference as she called it.
  • theoretica
    theoretica Posts: 12,431 Forumite
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    edited 27 July 2022 at 8:04PM
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    If she is surviving at home with you and a friend popping in, then I think it likely the council would assess she needs less than 24/7 care to start with - maybe offering carers coming in more than once a day. 
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
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