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Is immobile father entitled to be provided with an armchair at home by NHS?

(12 Posts)
mears Sun 23-Aug-09 14:02:43

My Dad is 92 years old with Alzheimers. In December of 2008 he was admitted to hospital with the Norovirus and was very unwell. He could walk before he went in but he was not mobised regularly in hospital and could therefore not walk when he was discharged in January.
He lives at home with my 76 year old mother. We have a hospital bed and pressure mattress in what was the dining room and he has carers who come in 4 times a day. He has to be hoisted from bed to chair.
Mum bought an electric armchair for him a few year ago but it is no longer suitable.
It does not support him properly and his posture is gettingworse. He looks uncomfortable and tends to tilt to 1 side so needs pillows put in to prop him up.
I feel that he should have an assessment by someone (physio? occupational therapist? and be provided with an appropriate chair.
Is that possible?
It is amazing that he is still here TBH and by the look of things, he will be here for a while yet.
Any experience or advice?

FarkinBarkin Sun 23-Aug-09 14:33:41

Help the Aged have some leaflets on this.

Equipment for Daily Living has general advice and includes the kind of chair you describe in it as something that would come under this category.

It says:

"If you are experiencing difficulties at home and think that a particular piece of equipment or device would be useful, you should get in touch with your local social services department (England and Wales), social work department (Scotland) or health and social services trust (Northern Ireland). Ask for an assessment of your needs. Staff can arrange for an occupational therapist to visit you to look at the problems you are having.

The occupational therapist will help you find a solution by looking at different ways you can perform difficult tasks, and by suggesting the most suitable equipment for you. The occupational therapist will then usually arrange for the equipment you need to be provided. The equipment is not always free; usually a charge is made."

Elsewhere on the site it lists groups that might be able to help with costs if needed.

I hope he can get the help he needs.

mears Sun 23-Aug-09 15:41:08

Thank you for that. I thought the occupational therapist might be the person but we have always found it is not an easy route to get what you need.
Considering we are keeping him at home when he has extensive care needs, you would think that you would be entitled to some financial support wouldn't you? He could easily be in an NHS bed.

PrammyMammy Sun 23-Aug-09 15:56:25

Hey, sorry to hear about your dad.
Who was it who provided the bed? You could ask them about a chair.
My nan was provided a chair, a bed and a toilet when she wasn't well. The bed and toilet came first as she had her own chair and the bed could sit up, but as she became sicker she needed a chair, my aunt called her nurses who visited daily about the chair and it was delivered before 6pm the same day.

mears Sun 23-Aug-09 16:29:13

It was provided by the hospital initially. It was then swapped by community care. He has a nurse who visits when needed. Will speak to her but in the past I have found that no-one really takes much responsibility. He was provided with the wrong type of hoist sling initially and it was only when I contacted the moving & handling department myself (I work in NHS) that it got sorted.

LilyOfTheMountain Sun 23-Aug-09 16:51:05

is he claiming attendance allowance, Mears? And has his carer claimed CA and an assessment by SSD?

mears Sun 23-Aug-09 17:02:37

Yes, my mum claims attendance allowance.

Dad had an assessment for a wheelchair but nothing else. The request for the wheelchair assessment was initiated by the hospital. It took quite a while for it to come and really he is not comfortable looking in it. He has put on a lot of weight since his initial assessment, mainly due to steroids. The lady who assessed him for it seems reluctant to admit that it is not really fit for purpose now. He does not hold his arms well and they tend to dangle down the side of the chair. There is a table you can put on but that presses into his stomach.
No-one appears to have looked at him form head to toe and suggested anything for him.
It always seems to be crisis management before you get anyone. The last time social worker came was when my mum could not cope and requested help. It was organised that he would go into a home for a week's respite but he was very unhappy there. Mum will not do that again. I help out when she needs time away and she will have a break in October when she will be away for 5 days.
She is settled into a good routine now and I just think she gets forgotten about. I would have thought that a 6 monthly visit at least wouldn't go amiss. The nurse comes 3 monthly to change his catheter or if there is a problem.
I'll help mum get some kind of assessment initiated next week.

LilyOfTheMountain Sun 23-Aug-09 17:06:46

Do see if you can get advice from help the aged- SSD are massively over worked as we all know, and you are bang on saying it is crises management. However, often they have the local knowledge to know where you can go outside of SSD (for example we accessed an organisation allied to a previous profession, a benevolent trust).

mears Sun 23-Aug-09 17:12:11

Thankyou LilyOfTheMountain. Hadn't thought of that.

LilyOfTheMountain Sun 23-Aug-09 17:13:13

(It is Peachy, btw)

Hope they can help Mears

mears Sun 23-Aug-09 17:14:37

Hiya smile

mears Tue 25-Aug-09 16:33:43

Update.

Mum got in contact with OT today. She can send in a self referral form for as assessment. Downside is that there is a backlog of assessments till March needing done. So if there is an 5 months waiting list, Dad could be dead by then. Will need to look at something privately I think.

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