Social care's got worse??

Discuss news stories and political issues that affect carers.
So far, most people seem to be saying social care is worse than it was 10 years ago. What's changed for you?

- is there less choice about services? Has social care services been cut? If so, where?
What have you tried to do about this in your area?

My father has a careplan for personal care and breakfast in the morning every day. He used to have a homecarer in at 5pm to ensure he had a meal, plated ready for the microwave, and a snack left for his bedtime tablets. As he attends daycare three days a week now the evening calls on these days have been stopped "as he has had his hot meal at daycare". A sandwich is left in the morning for bedtime, but he always needs it at 5pm, then has nothing to take with his medication which makes him feel sick when he wakens up the next morning. Recently he was ill and could not attend daycare, but his evening call was not re-instated, which makes nonsence of the "daycare" arguement.
On his regular homecarer`s weekend off his is lucky if he gets breakfast by mid-day. This is because everyone is overstretched and not enough time allowed for all the calls required. On these weekends he almost always phones for assistance and if we are still in the house when homecare call they make the point they shouldn`t be there. I used to apologise, but now say, "I am the one who shouldn`t be here!"
I struggle to understand, and so does dad`s homecarer, why if he needs help twice a day he only gets 11/14ths of his entitlement.
He has been on the waiting list for bedtime "tuck-in" for two years now, and some nights he struggles to get there at all. Again we await the phone call to come and help.......where is the dignity in this for a way of life.
I understand some people have no help, but the fact he used to have more care and now has less is getting silly. Social services provided a walk in shower as he could not get in and out of the bath safely, but he only gets to use it on "bath day" unless he has soiled himself. Some mornings the carers come in and find him in the shower waiting for them to help him out as if he needs a shower he doesn`t see why he should have to ask someone else if is ok.
Hello Meg, thanks for getting in touch - though sorry you've had such a bad experience with your father's care package. I wonder if he's had an assessement recently, or indeed if you have as his carer. Do you have anybody you could talk to in social services about your father's care? Or your/his GP?

More information about carers' assessments and rights on our website:

This also points you in the direction of support organisations in your area. I dont know whether you are in touch with your local carers centre? But might be able to provide advice. Also Carers Scotland - are a really good source of information.

We also have a helpline: Carersline - 0808 8087777 if you need help or advice about what support you are entitled to as a carer.
i do hope this helps. We'll certainly take on board what you're saying about cuts in services in our campaigning.
Dear Meg: It is a very sad state that this country does not have the will or compulsion to give people the care and dignity that they deserve and have already paid for, i believe that it is going to get far worse than it is already, this country unlike other countries seems not to have any respect for the elder generation and that the old and infirm are just a burdon on society where as other countries look upon their elderly with love and compassion, our politicians are just looking for ways to get rid of the elderly by witholding and not giving them the care they deserve.
How come we are the forth richest country in the world and yet we treat our elderly the worst, untill there is some organisation that will actually confront the government about the issues such as poverty, which is a large issue, and that enough money is put into the care of our elderly and sick, even though there are many organisations around that say they are working for better treatment of the sick and infirm please tell me what big diffrence they have made,hardly any change whatsoever, if children were being looked after like this, things would be changed overnight, that tells me that the government does not regard the care of the elderly and carers as an important issue, over the next few years more and more suffering is going to happen, sad but true Image

Take care Tony. Image Image Image Image Image
Hello all
I am quite new to all this care idea both from my own point of view and Mums, we live together. Unfortunatly we both became in need of help at about the same time. Mum is 89 and has heart and kidney failiur both slowley getting worse. I have Chrones a Illiostomy and Otoproisis inhetited and hastened by taking steriods for the Chrones culminating in a fall that crushed 3 vertibra and the diagnosis of life time pain hopefully controlled by Pain patches. The pain clinic refered us both to Social Services as they considered I was no longer able to give the level the same level of care to Mum and needed help myself that was at the end of January. Mums health got worse and she was admitted on April 2 not expected to live but she did and was discharged on April 23rd. The Nurses assured me that all the help she needed was set in place. I like a idiot believed them and by the time I got to the hospital to collect her the staff had changed duty so they told her what was set up. The nurse comming daily and meals on wheels also the Doctor was to call and moniter her weight as this is a simbol how the kidneys are. The meals turned up but nothing else. Whilst in hospital she had developed a large ulcer that had become infected but they did not tell the district nurse so I rang them when the puss was leaking out, evening after discharge. Poor old sole she could not put her leg to the ground without agony. I have chased Social services every week since the end of march and they ignor me each time they say they will ring me back but they never do. I have manage to get the district nurse in twice a week and the leg is improving the Doctor has been in once when I had a appointment about my pain Patch she asked how Mum was but knew nothing of her stay or discharge from hospital . Sorry this has got into a ramble but what I want to know is how do I get the social to take notices of us, at the moment I feel drastic action is required. I do manage to work for 5 hours a day but that is only to get a sit down!!!
as I need to be me.
Does anyone have any ideas
No improvement here - there isn't a single service our son has that we haven't fought to get in the first place, or to keep. Usually both. We're lucky because we've learnt a lot about the system over the years. Others are not so lucky.

There are some real horror stories out there.
Here in Norfolk, mental health services are being drastically cut.
There appears to be little support for the user and if there is any help for the carer then it comes from the voluntary sector.
I worked hard, attending meetings to get us carer support workers but they are still having problems and arguing because they cannot decide who it is that should do the assessments.
In 2004 I attended a seminar that said how wonderful it would be once we got the carer support workers.
But today all I hear are more and more cut backs.
The members on Chill4 complain of lack of support, lack of services but mostly of lack of understanding and a lack of being heard. The loneliness and isolation being the most frustrating thing to contend with. The constant fight of asking and pleading for help, constantly grinds every carer down to the ground.
These are my thoughts.
best wishes
Dear Avril: Contact your local newspaper, your local radio station, your MP, email the chief executive of the local council and say you are going to contact the press, basically do anything in your power to get some attention, thats what i had to do years ago and sometimes it works.

Take care and keep us informed of what is going on.

All the best Tony. Image Image
Thanks Tony -lots of good suggestions there. Might also be worth raising with other local carers Avril - has anyone else had the same poor experience? There's definitely strength in numbers, and with the new councillors in place after the local elections might be a good time to get them on side.

We've got a lot of helpful resources - including template letters, and a section 'how to campaign' on our website -

Good luck, and keep in touch
Thans for comenents
The main person in our over sixtys club has provided me with some forms and has offered to help fill them in. It is a great help as I have problems with the 3 Rs and when I have time I am tired si brain does not conect to the mouth or hand for writing.
I will let you know how we get on. It is 2 weeks to get a form sent to us. A person could die in that time!!! Image Image