New carer and struggling!

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Hello folks

I was on here many years ago when i cared for mum who had Alzheimers. She passed away in January this year after a long battle with the disease.

Will try and keep this short. My hubby had a hip replacement op in June. It went wrong and he got a wound infection and sepsis. The Consultant decided the best course of action was to have an antibiotic spacer (temp hip) in place which heals from the inside out. Hubbys mobility is extremely limited and although hes on crutches ive had to buy a wheelchair. Hes been turned down for a Blue Badge until after he has his next operation for another full hip replacement. Needless to say, we have been struggling and financially too! I was made redundant in July, but would not have been able to work anyway for caring for hubby. He was going daily to the hospital for intravenous antibiotics.

What is bothering me the most is the time its taking for Carers Allowance to deal with my claim. Im used to a wage coming in and we have had to rely on hubbys pension and attendance allowance. Its been hard! I rang CA today and they say it maybe October before i hear. There is an 8/10 wk backlog with claims. Its ridiculous!

When Mum passed away i inherited her house and wanted to keep it rather than sell. There were care fees outstanding so i had to remortgage the property to pay them off. I now rent the house but there is a mortgage to pay on it now so im not rolling in it! Im hoping this will not affect my claim for CA.

How do other carers cope with the stress of caring and minimal finances? I just feel powerless and not sure what to do for the best? Any advice would be most welcome.

Many thanks

Hello Elaine

I'm very sorry to hear about your Mum and sorry, too, to hear about your husband's problems.

Firstly any income from renting out your inherited property doesn't affect your CA - they are only interested in 'earned' income - i.e. salary/wages from work.

With regards to any further benefits/help you or your OH might be eligible for I'd suggest that you contact the Carers UK Adviceline team as they are the experts on all matters related to caring and benefits.
Need expert advice? You can talk to the Carers UK Adviceline five days a week, no matter where you are in the UK or how complex your query is. We do benefits checks and advise on financial and practical matters related to caring.

Freephone: 0808 808 7777

Carers UK’s advice and information team based in London is undergoing staff changes. This means the Adviceline is closed on Thursdays and Fridays whilst we recruit and train new members of staff. We will be taking calls on Monday – Wednesday between 10am and 4pm. . You can email or write to the Adviceline and we will respond to your enquiries within five working days.

The Carers UK Adviceline also includes a listening service, there for you to talk through your caring situation with a trained volunteer who understands what you are going through. Available Mondays and Tuesdays, from 10am to 4pm.

If you can’t get through on the phones (lines are often oversubscribed) then send them an email, they’ll usually get back to you within 3-5 working days.
Hi Susieq

I remember you from the last time i was on here years ago. You were caring for your mother the same as me.

Thank you for your advice. I have contacted the helpline regarding CA but didnt ask about any other benefits. I did enquire about Direct Payments but as i obviously live with hubby i doubt i will qualify even though im actually a qualified carer! Hubby wont have anyone else caring for him. I do have a cousin who gets DP and she lives with her husband. I think it depends on the local authority? Anyway im awaiting Social Services to contact me for an assessment. Everything takes such a long time to action!

Many thanks

Sorry to hear about the bad experience with the hip replacement.

This may not be what you wanted to take on right now, but, have you considered that maybe the 'went wrong' involves a degree of 'incompetance' and/or 'culpability'?

Just a thought. You might, if you could face it, look up on the internet to start with as to whether others have taken issue with such an outcome, and if there is a case for a formal complaint, and all that follows???

I appreciate that right now you're just trying to keep your head above water, but when you think about it, it's unlikely that any of the doctors or the hospital itself would 'voluntarily' admit to anything happening that shouldn't have happened - they may be thanking their lucky stars you aren't following this up!???

All that said, I do appreciate that EVEN IF your husband does have cause for complaint, actually getting any compensation etc could be a nightmare stressful process.....

hoping things come together for you and the remedial action they are taking does actually end up with a functioning new hip!
Hi Jenny

Yes ive already done that, been there etc....spoke to two solicitors who dont think i have a case. Apparently when you sign the consent form for any operation it lists the risks. Risk of infection is a common factor. Both solicitors were not interested in taking hubbys case on. Not enough evidence and trying to prove how he got the sepsis is difficult 😠 so we just have to deal with the consequences!!

It really doesnt seem right! Hubby is suffering unnecessarily and im suffering too....i cant work and we are financially worse off. Plus ive worked harder carinng for hubby than i did when i was employed as a carer. Its 24/7 ! Such is life....

Oh dear, sorry to hear that. Even if you had had a case, it's SO hard to take on the hospitals etc.....