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Equipment supply - Carers UK Forum

Equipment supply

Share your ideas about the practical side of caring.
Hi, Can anyone please advise we on Social Services obligations to provide essential equipment and more specificly ramps to enable the disabled person to get into and out of the house. We asked for a ramp in June as my husband is in a wheelchair and cannot get out of the house unless we have one. Social Services say they do not provide ramps and we must apply for a Disabled Facilities Grant. We have done this but the process is so slow he is liable to be housebound for serveral months yet. Hubby would love to get out of the house.. Doctor has to make house calls, hospital visits involve ambulance bookings etc. Is this normal?
I have never heard of the SS telling you that it is up to YOU to provide these things, before. In our instance it was the council/discharging hospital (spinal unit)/GP/SS all working together to ensure that ramps were installed at our old house to enable hubby to get in and out safely. We had a Facilities Grant to build an extension consisting of a bedroom and shower/wet room for hubby, plus a sloped entrance/exit door to the garden for emergencies (in case, but a handy way into the garden anyway!).
In fact, he came out of the spinal unit and spent time in the little town's cottage hospital, whilst all the building and adaption work was going on, because the hosp wouldn't let him home until it was safe for him to go back.

It's not up to you to provide these things for the sake of other professional bodies' convenience. What if you live in a flat, lots of disabled people do!

We did, however, have to purchase our own ramps to drive the wheelchair up into the back of the estate car though. We got those from Portaramps in Thetford and they lasted 12 years, before we had to replace them with longer ones for a newer car.

Sorry if I'm out of date with these things, but we've not experienced the SS telling us that we should provide these things. I would talk to your social worker or the SS again, or your hubby's occupational therapist, who would be involved with his mobility issues.
Good luck, let us know what happens please.
Hi, your OT should be able to loan you a suitcase ramp in the meantime. They're portable and very strong.

Best wishes, Lisa x Image
Are they looking at grants for disabled people at all?
In our county,Pembrokeshire, the only grants they are looking at are for pensioners. If you are a younger disabled person then it is hard lines, you won't get anything.It is shocking, and I don't know why they are allowed to deny people the right to going out of their home.
Many thanks for the replies, it is the OT's who say the council will not provide ramps on a temporary basis, hence the need to apply for a grant. They have agreed to alterations to the front access with the aid of a grant but as I said, the process takes a long time. We have expressed our concerns to our Care Manager but she says it is ot her department. The OT's insist on not supplying anything at all. I have purchased a hoist for the car to enable his chair to be lifted in and out of the car but until I can get the chair out of the house the hoist is redundant. I guess I will also have to purchase a ramp such as the suitcase type until the alterations to the front door are done.
Our OT said they couldn't do a ramp for us and even just coming to that decision took ages. In the mean time we were calling regularly and chasing things up. We didn't get them in the end but no longer need them as we have a different wheelchair, but near the end of it all the OT turned up and gave us a couple of temporary ramps that we might use while they decided on anything permanent. I don't know why they didn't give us the temporary ramps in the first place, if we had them we wouldn't have needed anything permanent - they worked perfectly! But they were only given to us as a kind of after thought ages after our chasing up so if you haven't already (I apologise if you've already covered this point) then it might be worth asking for something like this. Our ramps are just a couple of specially designed bits of metal with rubber grips on that we place on the doorstep ourselves, I'm sure they couldn't have been a big hassle for social services to provide so hopefully something like this would be possible.
we asked our council to fix our garden path (council rented property so upto them in my opinion), we need to push a wheelchair across the path, however all the stones are up and down, bumpy lumpy so we asked them to remove the stones and just make one solid concrete path you know.. they told us NO YOU CANT HAVE A NEW PATH... this was about 2 months after they concrete a path for a woman across the street who doesnt even have disabilities.. Image

how much would it cost to pour some cement into a path mould or whatever it is they do ..blimey.. you would think we asked for the moon on a rope Image
Our LA relaid concrete path which had turned to rubble after the hard frost and deep snow last winter. Both OH and I had fallen on the sloping path and my knee is still painful. Our access is by one door on the side of the property and future wheelchair access would be practically impossible as the path is very narrow and next door`s retaining wall is 3feet from our front door.

I would be going back to social services and asking what you are supposed to do in the event of a fire (God forbid). Surely it is against human rights to have someone housebound through their neglect rather than their disabilities. Your fire safety officer may also have some strings he could pull to help you with this.

Take care
i had to wait nearly 13 years to get a ramp for garry.i kept on asking for one and was told no money or there is a waiting list all the excuses under the sun. i had to bump the chair up or down 3 stairs.
then out of the blue i came home one day and couldnt get down the stairs as they had started to build a ramp for me, and stopped as it had started to snow. i had to get a neighbour to help me lift the chair into the house as the ramp was half built and finished in mid air.

We had ramps that just turned up for us but just having done a quick Google search it seems this normally falls under DFG - which you are already in the process of. You need to keep hassling the DFG department, not your OT and keep on their case. It should not take this long.
Also, have you thought about making a ramp yourself, or getting a friend to help?
I made a couple of small ramps for inside the house out of a skirting board and planed them into shape and stained them to match the floor. For bigger ramps, my partner's dad made one, again out of wood and metal hinges. It is basic, but it works and is solid, plus it does not cost much at all. Local carpenters might do you one for a small fee, just a thought.