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FIL health crisis, help please.

(145 Posts)
SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:01:40

Not feeling on top form as have a virus and woukd appreciate some thoughts on this.

Background. FIL is 88 and lives in Spain alone. He has Parkinson's, Type 2 diabetes, glaucoma (going blind) and his hearing is going. 10 years ago he had a triple bypass .MIL died 5 years go and he has refused to come back and live in UK. Lives in a flat and his neighbour has basically been looking after him with a cleaner 3 times a week, despite efforts from us to have more care. SIL rings a couple of times daily and DH every evening.

He is over in UK staying with SIL. She has her hands full, her DH has cancer and is about to start chemo and she has just become a Grandmother, she works part time as well. We were going to go and see him tomorrow. There are 2 other Brothers who live close to SIL (we're 2 hours away). They are all much older and near retirement, also have grown up children. DH only in 40's and we have children. DH has tried to arrange for the Brothers to all get together tomorrow but neither have answered emails. His SIL sent understandably stroppy email to point out to them their Dad had been here for a week but neither of th, had been to see him.

SIL says FIL has lost about a stone since last summer, doesn't eat much and isn't speaking much. She's just text DH to say last night he was shouting as saying people were in his room and he what himself. She's saying he needs round the clock care.

Issues. He is a Spanish resident, owns a flat in Spain (pretty much unsellable) and has about 30k in shares, though some he can't sell.However I think he is still registered over here with a GP. He will refuse residential care. We are away for to weeks next Saturday. SIL I imagine needs relieving of this immediately as DH starting chemo. Other two brothers are fuck knows where.

Sorry to be so longwinded but trying not to drip feed. I know the answer to this really, he needs to go into emergency respire care doesn't he? We've only just got my Mum sorted in a CH, she has Dememtia. I know the drill.

I'm so sorry to tell you this, but if he hasn't been resident in the uk for the last 6 months he won't be eligible for NHS treatment/ care. This certainly used to be the case, hope to goodness it's changed sad

Nomama Sat 09-Aug-14 17:08:42

Yup. You are going to have to step in with your recent knowledge and help get him sorted.

Your DH and SIL need to attack approach the brothers together. They need to help in any way they can. Make very specific demands of them "As you won't have him to stay whilst I take DH to hospital you will need to pay for the carer who will be here looking after him" that kind of thing.

Dad had similar trouble with his eldest sister, fortunately, as there are 7 of them, she was told in no uncertain terms that her behaviour was not acceptable - and her martyr act just got laughed at!

Morethanalittlebitconfused Sat 09-Aug-14 17:10:47

If he's a Spanish citizen it's unlikely he will have recourse to public funds meaning everything he needs from a health and social care stance he will need to either self fund or be here and be 'sponsored' meaning you as a family pick up his bills.

Nomama Sat 09-Aug-14 17:10:54

He definitely will get NHS care, as any other EU resident. There's just some extra paperwork.. this might help

juneau Sat 09-Aug-14 17:14:57

He's losing his grip on reality, by the sound of it and may well not be able to make his own decisions any more if he's barely eating, speaking, wetting himself, hearing voices, etc. So I think that yes, you know what you need to do and your SIL should call a GP and ask for an immediate assessment as your FIL doesn't sound well at all.

In addition, I would urgently find out:
1) What are his rights re: healthcare in the UK if he's a Spanish resident? AFAIK if you are resident abroad you are not necessarily eligible for healthcare and residential help here. However, if he's in need of immediate care (which he is, by the sound of it), he should be entitled via the EHIC system. Switching his residency back to the UK might be necessary. You might need power of attorney to do this. It could all be rather complicated and with SIL's DH starting chemo, you going on holiday for two weeks next Sat, and the two other brothers AWOL it could hardly all be happening at a worse time! I'd do what you can this week to support your SIL and get DH to call his other brothers and demand they step up. Good luck!

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:20:24

He's still a UK citizen but resident in Spain. Just read SIL's text. She has basically said he needs 24 hour care, I can't cope, you boys have to sort it. Don't blame the poor woman one bit.

Plan is to ring Brothers and say whatever plans for tomorrow, cancel them and be at SIL's. If the won't answer phones then we'll Facebook their children (in their 30's).

We need to find somewhere that can take him for emergency respite tomorrow. If anyone knows of anywhere West/East Sussex, I'd be grateful of places to start. DH test SiL to say don't worry, we will all sort.

stateoftheart Sat 09-Aug-14 17:23:42

How did he get to the UK if he is that confused?

LEMmingaround Sat 09-Aug-14 17:26:20

Might be difficult as its the weekend but call social services. You will have to get stroppy if you want somewhere over the weekend but they will find him somewhere. The only issue with that is if you get somewhere he is likely to stay there so waiting until you can look around might be better but I appreciate it might not be practical to do so.

Morethanalittlebitconfused Sat 09-Aug-14 17:26:32

Check the CQC website for homes in the area

Sorry to hear you're going through this.

Ring social services on monday

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:27:33

Think the neighbour took him to the airport and SIL met him, no idea.

She's text again saying now not care over here, he was better after a sleep. To increase his care in the flat back in Spain as she thinks he is disorientated here.

Oh dear <understatement > there is a track record of the family not being realistic. FIL was trying to nurse MIL after cancer op. DH went over and found she was having the sum total of 140 cals a day.

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:28:22

Apparently he was more coherent after a sleep

LEMmingaround Sat 09-Aug-14 17:28:56

The confusion could actually be due to a urine infection. Especially if its acute. He really sounds like urgent medical care is needed. flowers

vintagenurse Sat 09-Aug-14 17:33:33

If he has managed to get from Spain to England, has he come over confused quite suddenly? Im just thinking he may have a UTI, which can make elderly people very confused. I would get him assessed asap by a GP/walk in centre and get them to test his urine.

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:41:26

Was just saying that to DH. Last year he camemd had a kidney infection.

A few months ago he put some oil in a frying pan and stuck it in the oven then forgot about it. Neighbour came in and found flat full of smoke, smoke alarm blaring and him totally oblivious.

It's clearly too much for neighbour who has talked about moving. I can't get my head ariund the idea of him going back. DH will be the only one out of 4 saying he needs to stay. There's no POA in place for uk or Spain either. DH got stressed and needed a break so I took over amd emailed everyone saying look, here's his financial situation, did you know (DH went out in Feb and got the figures). He can afford x amount if hours extra care. His liquid savings will run out, need to think about selling some shares.

One BIL came back, he'd spoken to him, all his shares are sorted out for when he dies. Er no, they are needed for care. But it's like banging your head against a bloody brick wall. Sorry, I feel the need to rant, thank you all!

LEMmingaround Sat 09-Aug-14 17:50:17

Tell bil that is fine. That you assume he will be covering the cost of his care from now on then...

Morethanalittlebitconfused Sat 09-Aug-14 17:53:05

If your in laws are expecting social services to foot the bill when FIL has sufficient funds they'll soon get short shrift from the social worker

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:54:23

That's assuming we ever get to speak! I sent email to both BIL's. It said GO says DH needs a break. Can one of you please take over the 6pm phone call to give him a break for a couple of weeks, SIL is doing enough already.

The replies ? Well neither of them did.

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 17:57:51

Probably are Morethanalittle. DH said that BIL's wife said to MIL when she was still alive ' we won't have any money until you and FIL go' shock

LEMmingaround Sat 09-Aug-14 18:04:19

If he needs emergency care the finances will be secondary. I think he at least needs assessment. I really feel for you because the man's home is in spain but he can no longer care for himself. It must be very difficult. I think get him assessed by a medical professional at least before he goes back. There are medicines that can help with early stage dementia and he needs a health plan.

juneau Sat 09-Aug-14 18:13:29

He needs to be checked for urinary infection, dehydration (if he's not eating, is he drinking enough?), and also blood sugar. If he's diabetic and not eating properly this could be the cause of his confusion. Is he taking his meds for his diabetes, Parkinson's, etc? I realise SIL is overwhelmed, but he needs to be seen by a doctor. She's hoping this problem will go away, by the sound of it, and while this is somewhat understandable given her worries about her DH, he's a very old man in poor health who is currently under her roof, so he's her (and the wider family's), responsibility. Him returning to Spain in his current state would be negligent in the extreme!

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 18:14:36

Thanks LEM. I agree with you, I think he needs a full assessment re his care needs, a good check over to see check no underlying infection. I suspect the hallucinations are probably his Parkinson's progressing and with his history of heart problems, current meds, age and coexisting conditions they woukd be unlikely to prescribe Aricept, Galantamine etc.

Guess we need to do this step by step. First thing is to try and raise the BILs on the phone .

I just can't see how he can possibly be ok back in Spain. But I can just see everyone burying their heads bout the situation again. Before he had capacity but I suspect he would now fail a capacity assessment as h is unrealistic about his care needs. It's a re-run of my Mother and that got to the solicitor point last year between me and my Brother with SS threatening to take him to the COP.

I remember from previous threads (been here for 10 years) that you had problems with your Mum, how are things ?

maras2 Sat 09-Aug-14 18:15:46

This is so sad and well done you for taking the reins so far.Maybe Age Concern can give you some advice about immediate and long term care.Give them a ring.

LEMmingaround Sat 09-Aug-14 18:18:54

Thanks sugarplum - she is plodding along still driving me nuts smile

SugarPlumTree Sat 09-Aug-14 18:24:07

Sorry about the driving you nuts bit LEM sad

Juneau, I know you are right and am practising my Best Interests and Dury of Care speeches again for tomorrow, assuming we can locate BILs. Maria, good suggestion, a job for Mobday.

If it were my Dad I would be in the phone to the Duty SW, I have done that before for Mum.

We're having another cuppa whilst DH gearing up to ringing round.

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