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Going it alone! - Carers UK Forum

Going it alone!

Share information, support and advice on all aspects of caring.
After a dreadful experience with a care company, I cancelled the services and decided to go it alone.

I worked out despite supposedly having three 30 minute calls a day they were on average in the house 5 minutes.
Taps on the calculator said Mum was paying them nearly £120 an hour.

Taking care of my 71 year old housebound Mum is a formidable challenge, but I've been coping OK. It's lonely, but Mums hygiene is my main concern.

I use a barrier cream on the lower regions, but rarely get a chance to wash her face and main body, legs etc.

She seems content with me looking after her, but I worry about her health. Anyone else in the same situation?
£120 an HOUR?

That seems unbelievable!

Are they really the only care company around?

What care needs does your mum have? (ie, what is actually wrong with her?)
Hi Stephen
May I ask if you live with mum in her house or have any other residence of your own? This may prove relevant further down the road when calculating cost of ongoing care.
My first thoughts though would be to kick up a stink about the first care company- good companies do not behave like this- I have experience of both good and bad!
Stephen, was mum classed by the local authority as "self funding"? If they were paying for part of the care package, did they offer you the alternative of Direct Payments?
I would suggest that you employed a nurse, privately, to come in once or twice a week to give her a thorough wash and check over. It's so important that the intimate areas are kept fresh, especially if continence is an issue. An hour or two for a "pamper session" would give mum the opportunity of having a little bit of feminine company and also give you the chance to escape, knowing mum was in safe hands.
This would be a dream little job for a nurse with school age children who wasn't currently employed.
It wasn't actually £120 an hour, it was £19.50 per hour. But as they were charging for 30 minutes per visit and rarely stayed longer than 5 minutes it was the equivalent to it.

Mum has had multiple strokes and can't really get around the house without my assistance and her Zimmer frame. She wears incontinence pads and rarely makes it to the loo in time. Despite desperately trying.

I live with Mum and the house is jointly owned between us and my Sister.

Mum is "self funding" but the problem we have is paying for a nurse, I've found the majority will only accept cheque payments, which seems a bit antiquated to me. It's trying to find someone who will accept card payments.
David, what's difficult for you about paying by cheque? Surely if you have a (debit?) card, you are entitled to a cheque book as well!

(I come from the cheque era, and love my chequebook!)

To be honest, I can't imagine many 'private' nurses/carers accepting payment by card - don't you need to have a whole special set up to do that? I can't take debit card payments, so why should they? I can happily cash cheques though!

Am I missing something here!?
David
Maybe the carers don't like internet banking. It does work, I've paid tradesmen that way. Plus by cheque. Cash in hand would be insecure, unless you had some form of payment receipt both of you signed?
Seems sad,that help is out there fór you both and payment methods are a stumbling block.
Hope you can sort it asap
Thanks for calling me David when my name is obviously Stephen.

Mum struggles to sign her name, also name a shop in this Country that would accept a cheque as payment.

Its time things moved forward, and its not costly to accept card or internet payments.

This is 2018!!!!!!
Stephen
I do apologise for using the wrong name and annoying you. Certainly was not intended on either part.
All I meant was some people, like a couple of my friends, do not own a computer, very intelligent people but do not want to pay for internet etc. I did state that I have paid tradesmen by bank transfers, which was great for me. Also, send my granddaughter some spending money should I wish to, by bank transfer, so I am definitely not against it.
Was trying to see the situation from all points of view, and trying to help you.
Cheques are used in the supermarkets in my area. I've waited in a queue more than once whilst a person completed one.
So as stated in my last post, I do hope you can get this issue sorted, as I understand,it will make life a little easier.
I, like others on the forum, have things to deal with, financially as well as emotionally, having had to go down the court of Protection route because my lovely husband lost the capacity to make decisions.
Yes, I'm aware it's 2018!!
Once again apologies for not using your correct name, and for offended you with my post.
Please stay with the forum, others will be along with practical advice.
King regards
Why do you want to pay in this way? I used to run a small business, the cost of a card machine was prohibitively expensive, I doubt that you will ever find anyone self employed doing this sort of work with a bank card machine, I'm afraid, however there are a few options that you might not be aware of.

Do you have internet banking? if so, that would be a quick and simple method of payment.
I can also ring my bank and they will make the transaction for me on the phone.

Do you have a bank account which doesn't issue cheque books? If so, think about opening one which does.
Or is it that your mum can't make payments herself, so you use her card to pay for expenses relating to her care?

If mum has mental capacity, but is physically frail, then you can ask the bank to set up a "third party mandate" so you can operate her bank account on her behalf. Then you can sign cheques relating to mum's bank account, yourself. This worked really well for my own mum, who was completely housebound but mentally good. (The manager of our local Halifax went to see mum himself to satisfy himself that mum was mentally OK and that the signature was her own, not made under duress)

Has mum arranged for you to have Power of Attorney? If not, maybe this is the time to ask a solicitor to do this for her. My mum finally did this when in hospital with the threat of amputation hanging over her. Much better to do it before this sort of crisis!