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Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Fri Oct 26, 2018 2:42 pm
by Nikiya
A friend from the north of Scotland has been admitted to hospital in London with a bleed on the brain (sub-arachnoid haemorrhage?) while on a business trip. Her husband obviously dropped everything and dashed down here, but will have to go back home and make arrangements shortly and then come back down again. Rail fares are horrendous, air fares slightly less so. His work is (summer) seasonal, so money is likely to be tight over the next few months. He's a Commonwealth citizen - not sure if he's taken out British citizenship yet, as they've only been married a few years - and I don't know whether he's entitled to benefits of any sort. She's late 50s, and I'm guessing he's roughly the same.

I've never encountered this sort of brain injury before, but am guessing it may need a fair amount of rehab while she's still down in London before she can return home? In that case, on a purely practical level he's going to need food and accommodation and expenses while he's down here, and unless she's covered by some travel insurance that's going to have to be funded somehow. He'll also be away from all those sources of casual work he might otherwise have been able to pick up to help tide him over.

So I guess what I'm really asking is where he might get sources of help for the practicalities over the next few months - charities, benefits etc. - not to mention the emotional support he's bound to need.

Any thoughts and experiences would be very welcome. Thank you.

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Fri Oct 26, 2018 2:51 pm
by Chris From The Gulag
Hi Nikiya ... an interesting and , at the same time , an unusual one ?

Best I can offer ... Internet search ... COMMONWEALTH CITIZENS UK CHARITIES ... is :

NRPF Network web site :

http://www.nrpfnetwork.org.uk/News/Page ... izens.aspx

Nothing specific , just indications as to where else to seek guidance ... but a starting point.

One snippet of immediate interest thereon :

The immigration exclusions set out in Schedule 3 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002, which apply to people who do not have any current immigration permission, should not prevent undocumented Commonwealth citizens from accessing social services' support because many are likely to be lawfully present, and those who do not already have British citizenship or a form of settled status will have very strong claims to remain in the UK on grounds of long residence, so return to country of origin is not going to be a viable option to avoid destitution in the UK.


Commonwealth citizen ?

That person's embassy / high commission in London ... would be my recommendation.

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Fri Oct 26, 2018 5:07 pm
by MrsAverage
If she or they have critical illness cover that may pay out. It often comes with mortgages, or some companies provide it for employees. Was she employed?

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Fri Oct 26, 2018 8:33 pm
by jenny lucas
Could she be transferred to a hospital in Scotland?

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Fri Oct 26, 2018 11:29 pm
by Nikiya
Thank you for your replies, everybody.

Yes, I know she has critical illness cover, and that should cover her for loss of income if she can't work in the future - she's self-employed - because we discussed it some years ago. However, I don't think it will deal with the immediate problem, which is subsistence for her husband over the next few weeks, should he need to stay down here - and I think he will. I have some ideas lined up about accommodation if necessary, but the train fare alone is over a week's worth of Jobseeker's Allowance (if that still exists and is applicable).

Actually, I've just done a bit of Googling and come up with https://www.headway.org.uk/supporting-y ... ency-fund/, which might be of help.

Jenny, yes, sooner or later I'm sure she will be moved back to Scotland, but I have no idea when this will be - I suspect it could be weeks, or even longer.

It's all really rather scary: you really don't expect anything like this to happen on a business trip in your own country. As I said, I hope she is covered by some sort of travel insurance which can help: her bank might be an obvious place to start for that. I know I get free travel insurance from mine. It's one of those things we just don't think about - like leaving someone a list of things they might need to know in an emergency, such as how to access your emails, get into your computer and so on.

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:23 am
by jenny lucas
I was wondering whether the cost of having her husband stay with her in London is greater than the cost of hiring a private ambulance to transfer her to a hospital in Scotland. She may be stable enough for that??

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Sat Oct 27, 2018 12:32 pm
by Dusty
Can the hospital advise? In the old days, it would have been the Almoner, but now I think it would be a welfare advisor, or social work department, or patient liaison. The hospital switchboard should be able to tell you the right name for that particular hospital.

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Sat Oct 27, 2018 8:10 pm
by MrsAverage
As it was a business trip, her employer should have travel insurance to cover her, or at least liability insurance for their employees the latter is mandatory I believe . Such insurance should cover reasonable out of pocket expenses

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Sat Oct 27, 2018 8:10 pm
by jenny lucas
Good point!

Re: Brain injury when away in London - advice needed

Posted: Fri Nov 09, 2018 11:11 pm
by Nikiya
Sorry I haven't replied: I thought I had this site set up to notify me of replies, but hadn't received any notifications.

She's self-employed, so no employer to provide cover. She does have critical illness cover or something like that, but again we don't know where the paperwork for that is ... And to get her to hospital in Scotland she'd have to be medevac'd - it's a 10-hour train journey.