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Fed up with changing care workers - Page 2 - Carers UK Forum

Fed up with changing care workers

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
Hi Bowlingbun and thanks for another helpful reply.

Do you mean it's a possibility CHC would provide a waking night carer and not push for Mum to go into a nursing home instead?
It's certainly worth asking. After all, they can't force mum into a nursing home against her will, because that would be against her human rights. The worst they can say is "No". Your local CCCG - Clinical Care Commissioning Group, should have published some sort of eligibility criteria on their website. Next time you can't get back to sleep, go to Google, type in the name of the authority where you live, and "Continuing Healthcare" and look at what information is online.
But Bowlingbun they have forced at least 3 young people of Rob's acquaintance into an old folks home against their will so Human Rights go for nothing against Social work dept's funding issues.

Social worker did scare me with this before. Was just explaining to me a worst case scenario but it scared me all the same. They can take a 'best interests' decision if the person lacks capacity. Mum is getting more and more confused as time goes on. My brother and I do have health and welfare power of attorney though, so I don't know if the court could go against what we wanted.
Sorry, meant to say how awful that is about your son's acquaintances. Really scary how much power these people have.

Thanks for info Bowlingbun.

Have just had another run in with current care worker. Will be relieved when she's gone tomorrow. Like last night, she called me from the bathroom. Had just had a bath and washed my hair. She said she wanted to give Mum her medication. I asked if she meant her bedtime medication? It's difficult to understand her sometimes because of the language barrier. She said we gave the last medication at 6 pm. I was sure it was later than that and I remember emailing my brother just after we'd given it to Mum, as I was relieved she'd woken up and been able to take some and have a little water.

So, I came downstairs and looked at the time of the email. 7.35 pm. I went in and explained this to the care worker. She insisted it was 6 pm and she'd written it in the book she said. She said we changed the pad and gave the medication. I was sure she was mistaken. She got a bit uppity (sp?) and said ok then. I thought harder and remembered we changed the pad whilst Mum was still sleeping. We then came back in the lounge and it was a while later when Mum woke up and called out for help, saying she was in pain.

I went in the kitchen to tell Veronica what I had remembered, in the hope it would jog her memory. She lost her temper! Said "I am carer and I have to give medication!" I then got annoyed too and said, "I am sorry but I was told very clearly by the NHS that I am in charge of medication." I asked her why she was getting so angry? I told her she doesn't even know what medication to give Mum at night. That it is different to the daytime medication. She said she knew that, which is why she called me.

I am still shaking. I really wasn't expecting her to lose her temper like that. I was merely trying to jog her memory for the purpose of getting the time of Mum's meds correct. Normally, I write down the time of administration but she keeps taking the note away and doing it herself.

I am very upset and I feel like giving her a piece of my mind but I know I must not do this. There is no point and it will just make things worse. I still feel like it though! I feel outraged!
Blue Mermaid,

I'm sorry to read of all the stress and problems you have had with live in carers. From everything you've written, I feel it's unlikely you will get the right sort of live in care to fully support your mother's needs, so I would suggest you reconsider the nursing home option, for your sake as well as hers.

My father has dementia and poor mobility, and is content in a residential care home. My mother is 89, severely underweight due to multiple digestive problems, is incontinent and bedbound. She was in hospital for 7 weeks, then moved into a nursing home a couple of months back. Mum hated the hospital and care was very disjointed there, so it was a nightmare, but she is settled in the nursing home, where she feels safe and comfortable. They are very good at checking her pad regularly through the day and night, so she is always fresh and clean. :) The staff give her regular bed baths too, and turn her regularly, so she has no bed sores. I tell you all this to give you reassurance that residential care can sometimes be a good option.

That said, no home is perfect and I do sometimes have to flag up issues at both homes, but that's OK, I'm happy to oversee their care and I see myself as their advocate. It's certainly a lot easier having them in care homes, with somebody else doing the physical care, and knowing that there is a team of staff in place 24/7 to support them gives me peace of mind.

I once visited Mum late at night in the nursing home, to help persuade her into bed as she'd been resisting (long story, she used to sleep on a sofa day and night at home, before she became bedbound). Between my phone call and my arrival they actually managed to get her into bed, so we left her sleeping and I was invited to meet the other night carers in the lounge. There were about 8 staff sitting around a table, chatting and drinking coffee. They explained they were all on waking night shift duty and they take it in turns to check the residents during the night, every 4 hours or every 2, depending on medical needs. They said they have a good routine and support each other when times get tough (a lot of people are there for end of life care, so it's demanding work). They seemed happy in their work. So, I think that most carers doing night work would prefer working nights in a nursing home where they are part of a team and have company and support to cope with things, rather than working alone, which could be very isolating. All this makes me think your mother would have better continuity of care in a nursing home, and you'd sleep a lot better. There would be nothing to stop you visiting her daily and continuing to help with her care if you want to, but you'd have a lot less worry and would be able to sleep undisturbed, or soak in the bath, whenever you like. :) Surely you can see the advantages?

Nursing homes vary a lot, but most of them will allow you to personalise the room with pictures, plants etc. Sometimes there is space to put in small items of furniture - some people have their own bookcases or display cabinets. Mum has a lovely fleece fur bed throw which makes her bed extra cosy. So, don't despair, the nursing home option may well be a good choice.
This is the norm in our experience, the local companies will freely admit they offer zero hours contracts, no sick pay, holidays etc. Consequently there is no loyalty to them, most Friday nights there are no staff because they are all on the razz and because they have zero hours contracts, it works both ways, they can say no to work as well as the company not offering them work. Can you blame them for their lack of loyalty to countless companies who want it all ways?

We have no rota for this week, I have no idea who is coming here and when. Situation normal. There is no such thing as care in the home, it is a misnomer designed to lure us into thinking we can care for our loved ones in their own homes with lots of back up and help from various agencies.....

We are baling out. Game over.
In addition to She Wolf's comments, I'd add that the continuity of nursing staff and care workers allows the caree to build relationships. My dad hated the intrusion of strangers in his home and I think I'd feel the same. In the care home, he talked with the staff and they got to know him as a person. It made the world of difference.
I also witnessed the night shift as I stayed at the home during the last days of my dad's life. The team checked the rooms regularly and were up and down responding to buzzers as people needed help. In the office they updated paperwork, had a chat, coffee and got on with their knitting.
Hi Blue Mermaid
I am sorry to read how stressful things have become with all the carers passing through your home. I am just picking up on your last thread where the carer lost her temper with you in your home. This is totally unacceptable. It is still yours and your mum's home and you should not be spoken to in this way. I know it makes a lot of additional work but try and keep a diary of who said what and did what and in what manner etc. Let the CHC know what is going on. They can always change the care company. From my own experience of CHC while funding lasted they used an agency that had a 5 star rating per the CQC reviews but were absolutely hopeless. Besides having a few totally hapless staff I kept them on privately for a while thinking better the devil you know, but i had more problems with their office and their admin than with the carers once I went private. I changed company and things have been pretty good ever since. I finally feel that they are helping me and not just creating work for me through checking up on them, complaining, correcting things, etc etc.
I acknowledge part of the problem is not liking to complain if it is being funded for fear of losing it, but if you think about it , the CHC are wasting good money paying for rubbish service and should be made aware. They will be able to select a different care provider possibly.
Hi SheWolf

Many thanks for your reply and for your concern.

I've already explained the reasons I don't want my mum to go into a nursing home. There is very little training for the problems posed by advanced Parkinson's Disease in the mainstream medical profession, let alone the nurses/carers in nursing homes. There is also a lot of ignorance amongst the general public about it. I didn't know much about it myself before Mum was diagnosed. I knew it was a serious illness though.

Also, checking on my mum every 2 hours when she's having a bad night isn't nearly enough and 4 hours no good at all. She needs one to one care and of course, they don't have the time or the resources for this in hospitals or in nursing homes.

Also, as I stated before, it's extremely important for Parkinson's patients to get their drugs on time every time and this is notoriously difficult to get through to staff in any institution, as they have their set times for drug rounds and think that the Parkinson's meds can be given at those times too. Each Parkinson's patient has a particular time regimen to stick to, which is worked out by their neurologist or Parkinson's nurse. If they don't stick to the regimen, it can cause seriously damaging effects that are irreversible.

I'm glad your mum is settled in a nursing home and they are able to meet her needs. I'm glad for you and your dad too Juggler (thank you for your reply) and for everyone else who have found nursing/care homes to be very good for their caree. It just wouldn't be suitable for my mum, so no, I can't see the advantages at all in our case. Every person and situation is different.