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Moving In To Care For Someone... - Carers UK Forum

Moving In To Care For Someone...

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
Whilst they are still awaiting discharge from hospital.

I have a bit of a dilemma at the moment. My mother is currently in hospital awaiting discharge but I get the feeling the process is being hindered by the involvement of the social worker who favours a move to a care home despite my having told them I intend to move in with my mother to care for her needs as it appears that due to a lack of mobility she is no longer able to manage this to any great extent (with some care worker assistance, primarily to be involved with bathing). The medical team have all assured me that everything is now being channelled towards my mother returning home, and there is actually no medical reason why she is remaining there (she was admitted for an infection that has long since cleared), however the social worker is delaying the process and delaying the process by organising the likes of an Occupational Therapy team to visit her flat and submit a report and so on (despite the fact that prior to being admitted my mother had been quite happily living at home receiving regular care worker support at quite a high level but without my involvement at that stage, the assessments and discussions that are taking place now having absolutely nothing to do with her home environment as it was prior to her admittance - it clearly hadn't been required then - nor has it been primarily to do with why she'd just recently been admitted to hospital).

Anyway, as I say I intend to move in with her to primarily deal with her needs and my mother has confirmed that this is what she wishes to happen. Her flat is council and I contacted them to let them know what was going on however the housing lady has insisted that she needs to receive confirmation from the social worker before I can receive 'permission' to move in (and bear in mind that my mother cannot be released without me being there first on a full-time basis) and that they need the reference from my current landlord and she also asked for my date of birth. Was she right to be needing all that from the next of kin of the tenant who has lived in the property for 30 years? I ask because in an ordinary situation, if someone renting has someone, say a partner, move in with them, usually they don't have to undergo all this double checking, they just move in and that's that. I'm concerned that social services will try to convince them to stop me moving in until 'they' decide fully what they want to do with regard to my mother's circumstances. With both of us now becoming frustrated with what is going on, and with my mother now being quite elderly, is there anything to stop me just moving in, and then saying right you can now be taken home straight away as I'm now there and any further alterations to her flat or new equipment recommended by the Occupational Therapists can be done once she's back and settled instead of us having to play the waiting game which, to be quite honest, involves a lot of time being wasted and my mother really doesn't have that much left to waste.
This sounds an absolute nightmare, I assume that your mother has the capacity to make her own decisions in which case these decisions should be respected unless she's at risk in some way which she doesn't appear to be. Does she need equipment to enable the carers to assist her with bathing perhaps, or other equipment? This could be the reason for the OT assessment but I would have thought that if your mother is fit for discharge that the LA would be in a hurry to get her out of hospital, they incur a charge for every night for which they delay discharge.

I'm not sure why the LA landlord needs so much information, if your mother didn't have a social worker they couldn't ask for confirmation, and I have no idea why they're demanding a reference from your current landlord, they could hardly make such a request if you were selling a home to move in with your mother. If this was sheltered housing there would be conditions attached to the tenancy but it sounds like general needs housing and I assume that you're not asking to be added to the tenancy agreement as a joint tenant so it seems that they're making things unnecessarily difficult for you. I would suggest that you check the conditions of your mother's tenancy agreement if it's available and also try to get advice from a CAB or specialist housing advice organisation if there's one in your area.

I noticed that on another post you stated that you would no longer receive IB when you started caring for your mother, IB is payable to carers as long as they continue to meet the entitlement requirements, you may also be entitled to an underlying entitlement to Carers Allowance, dependent on whether your mother receives DLA Care Component at the middle or higher rates or Attendance Allowance at either rate. I'd get advice on this also from a CAB or welfare rights organisation as some premiums paid with mean-tested benefits, if your mother receives them, can be effected. Housing and Council Tax Benefits can also be effected if someone moves into a claimant's home and become subject to a non-dependent deduction.

I think you need to get specialist advice on all these issues and the CUK helpline should also be able to advise you, I'm sure Rosemary will be able to give you the details of the phone number and opening hours when she next comes online. In the meantime I hope this helps a bit.
CarersLine can offer advice on any issue to do with caring and disability such as benefits, hospital discharge, employment issues, making a complaint, getting a social services assessment and much more.

The service is free. Unfortunately the service is currently only open for 2 days a week. However we do have an answerphone service if you leave details an advisor will call you back.

Telephone 0808 808 7777

Open Wednesday and Thursday 10am-12pm and 2pm-4pm
That is absolutely fantastic, thank you both very much for that. It *is* a nightmare, and it started from someone being appointed to deal with her affairs after her original social worker had left the profession turning out in reality not to be a social worker at all, as she had claimed and as she had told me further down the line, but who was in fact an unqualified assistant! Suffice to say that when my mother was admitted to hospital, for whatever reason she became completely driven to having her placed in an EMI care home, so much so that she greatly exaggerated my mother's condition to me, her position in the hospital, added complications onto it that were simply not there in reality in the hope, I believe, that I would begin to feel completely overwhelmed by the situation and that my thinking would come round to the same as hers as it being the only pheasable solution and 'in the best interests of my mother'.

That woman has now been replaced (although even for that to happen I had to insist upon it, despite an official complaint having been made), and due to my becoming much more involved in the whole process (not realising until almost too late that this was anything close to what was on the agenda and for a long time believing that what they had been telling me was true and that they knew best) that I've managed to largely get the situation turned around, have proven myself to be responsible enough to be taken seriously as far as the medical staff are concerned, but the only resistance is coming from social services who have tried everything to steamroller over my standpoint even though the assistant, as I say, is now subject to a complaint for her conduct and even her Team Leader, who took down the details of the complaint, tried her utmost to interject, to throw me off my train of thought when I was recounting my experience over the phone and even resorted to trying to intimidate me ahead of what was an already quite intimidating Disciplinary Team Meeting at the hospital involving all of us engaged in *any* eventual outcome in my mother's case by telling me in no uncertain terms that she, the Team Leader, would personally be there to argue their side of things which were in total contradiction to mine and where they totally believed my mother should be placed.

There is inevitably the potential for a huge stink to be created as a result of this (and there were other things that happened which were also a breach of precedure on the hospital side of things) - even the obvious consideration that my mother's human rights have been breached in all this as she is capable of making her own decisions but the assistant had told me she was not and I have found out from her GP only this week that prior to her admittance to hospital there was nothing on her record with regard to any mental illness - and on the social services side they have obviously been somewhat embarrassed to have their undeniable wrongdoings found out (I suspect all of it originating from a cost-cutting drive, rather than anything to do with the welfare of the patient). The assistant also had regular contact not just as far as my mother was concerned but with other people and, crucially, with my mother's housing office so... I think we all know where I'm going with that one! The possible wielding of further influence that she no longer has continuing to have implications.

As I understand things as they are it would only be under sectioning that my mother could now be forced into a care home in view of her circumstances and there would be absolutely no grounds for that to happen, even more so now with my commitment to things. It has been an absolutely shocking state of affairs, quite unbelievable, and a battle I'm largely fighting on my own, but my mother needs to be returned home, that is how I see it, and I need to be there (and I can understand the need for that) but I really don't see how social services can just go ahead and insist, time and time again, that the situation should be otherwise (I don't have any physical disability or anything like that likely to cause concern over my ability, no criminal record or anything whatsoever). I believe it has all been done for purely financial reasons and that social services do absolutely nothing in the genuine interests of the people they are brought in to help. I'll certainly be giving those people a call, thanks again.
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Hi PW
Your mother is actually entitled to have anyone that she wants move into her home. Friend, relative, who ever she wants. Although it's a council property, it's your mothers home. The only issue for the council to be interested in is if the property is going to be over crowded, for instances if it's a one bed flat. The only other issue to be considered is if/how it may affect any benefits that she is claiming. I'm also puzzled why the housing officer is requesting a reference from you.

If your Mum isn't sectioned,she can discharge herself from the hospital.Your Mum is after all a patient, not a prisoner! I can't believe the cheek of the social worker and the housing officer.
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Thanks, Cheril. I really feel I need all the support and advice I can get at the moment before it all starts up again from next week - I've just been reading up on Power of Attorney responsibilities, the Court of Human Rights proceedings, and all manner of things to try and get more of an understanding of my position and to give me hope of more influence over things (but it seems hugely complex). I think what's happened is that this woman who had been the 'social worker' (the assistant) told people that my mother is incapable of making her own decisions. That is also what she told me, and that it was due to advanced dimentia and that she was on a dimentia ward (which she isn't). I believe one of the people she also told will have been the housing officer, probably also informing her of her long term plans for my mother, and that is why the Local Authority woman is maybe needing further info on how social services are seeing things now? But I've already explained to her (albeit on the phone) what has happened and that this woman is now subject to a complaint for telling a complete pack of lies, but maybe if she believes her more than me, and she has had more involvement with her than me over a longer period of time and in dealing with other cases, then maybe she's within her rights to ask for this information? I don't know. I don't know whether or not I should just move in next week and then take my mother out of hospital or what. You see, she was admitted for a urinary infection which I don't think takes an awfully long time to treat and which, more crucially, I understand can make someone appear to be in quite a confused state. Apparently two MMSE's (some kind of mental assessments) were carried out - but I don't know when, exactly, although I suspect it was when she was still recovering from the infection and so was still confused (which was surely malpractice) so her 'mental incapacity' could have appeared to a layperson then and that has influenced these subsequent decisions. Unless I have Power of Attorney, presumably I can't see the records being held at the hospital. However, as I say, the GP has confirmed that there was nothing in terms of mental incapacity on her medical record prior to her hospital admittance so presumably dimentia can't come on in the space of 6 weeks and be so advanced within that time as to be in an advanced state and to make her incapable?

But other things that happened in the interim: whenever my mother was asked about a care home she would always tell whoever had asked that she had absolutely no wish to go into one - in the strongest possible terms! She has told me the same and she also told the Advocate (that the assistant had arranged to meet with her, didn't inform me of any plans for her involvement, of course) although I hadn't been consulted on any of this (yet, in spite of this and with full knowledge of my future plans to look after her I was surprised to actually find two people from a care home in my mother's hospital room with absolutely no supervision whatsoever, no social worker or anyone else present). One good thing to come out of this is that her newly appointed social worker was witness to my mother repeating her own demands only the other day with me present also, so it was clear to her if no-one else that my mother was not that far gone any longer. It's all just a huge mess at the moment. I was speaking on the phone to my mother the other night and she is fully aware she is in limbo and is getting increasingly upset at having to remain there. She has even expressed concerns about contracting a superbug - how many dimentia patients would be worried about that?!? At least the Occupational Therapists did seem to see nothing wrong with her flat and said that it appeared fine for her to return to but their report has to be mulled over and that takes more time (and can I believe what they said to be true - everyone else appears to have done some lying).

Oh, and with regard to the flat - no, it's 2-bedroom with quite large rooms inside.
I'm not sure what the amendments to the 1983 Mental Health Act have done in terms of this but prior to the amendments the only way in which your mother could be forced into a care home against her wishes was under a Guardianship Order, I'll check the Section number later. I would suggest that you ring the Mind Info-line:

http://www.mind.org.uk

You can check whether the first social worker was registered, there is a legal requirement for registration in order to practise, I'll have to post the link to this later.

I've come across social workers liaising with housing officers without the individual's permission before, a friend cared for his wife and they lived in a first floor housing association maisonette with outside stairs for access. When she could no longer manage the stairs the social worker suggested that they move, he refused to consider it, it had been their home for years, his wife had Parkinson's and dementia and was familiar with her surroundings and would have difficulty adapting to the layout, etc. of a new home and he didn't want to leave the area and the community he knew. Despite his refusal to consider a move he repeatedly received letters from the housing officer advising him of alternative accommodation.

If your mother's medical condition has been discussed with the housing officer without her permission I think you'll find it's a breach of the Data Protection Act, medical information constitutes sensitive personal data and the situations in which it can be disclosed to a third party without the data subject's (your mother's) permission are very limited. I'll post you a link to the information on this later too.

Apropos the dementia diagnosis, you might consider later if this can't be resolved getting an independent psychiatric assessment, in your situation I'd probably pay for it to ensure total independence.

I've got to go but I hope that this of some help.

Annie
Brilliant, Annie. Thanks ever so much. By the way, I checked her on the social care register and there was nothing, not even under a variation of the spelling, if that's where you mean. And the team leader confirmed to me that she wasn't a qualified social worker. I think they may be a bit short-staffed, hence.. Look forward to hearing from you later but I'm grateful for all this so far.
Quick dash back. If you are your mother's nearest relative you have certain rights under the Mental Health Act, I need to confirm this but the government originally intended to change the section relating to the nearest relative but I understand reverted to the 1983 legislation, they messed around so much over the Act over a nine year period it was hard to keep up with it and my interest is now only academic.
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PW wrote
You see, she was admitted for a urinary infection which I don't think takes an awfully long time to treat and which, more crucially, I understand can make someone appear to be in quite a confused state.


That is absolutely correct PW urinary infection definately do cause confusion, it can affect anyone but most particularly apparent in the elderly.
I worked in residental care homes many moons ago and I witnessed that myself. I've seen elderly people who were normally as sharp as tack quite literally not know what time of day it was, couldn't recall when they'd last had a meal, not even know where they were. I worked nights and I remember a lady appearing in the dining room in 3am dressed and expecting to be served lunch. So yes the confusion can be quite severe.
And after they were treated and recovered from the inferction they were fine, just as if they'd never had anything at all wrong with them.
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