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How can I find a carer?

(12 Posts)
mumblechum0 Thu 19-Jan-17 23:52:53

This is my first time in this part of MN so sorry if this has been asked a thousand times before.

My dad's in poor health; 83, widowed, severe arthritis, had a couple of mini strokes, can only walk 20 yards without stopping.

Anyway, he's had a suspected trapped nerve for a few days so GP prescribed tramadol.

Last night he fell at 10pm and wasn't found till my sister happened to visit at lunchtime today.

Police had to break in and the ambulance carted him off. He was confused which is what previously happened with mini strokes.

Now in. Acute medical unit.

I'm going up tomorrow(500 mile round trip), and am guessing that they won't release him till a care plan's in place.

When mum was dying there were lots of careers, and I'd like to find someone (ideally a man) to be his regular carer as he'll need help getting up and dressed etc.

How would I go about hiring someone?

I'll probably be footing the bills.

Akire Thu 19-Jan-17 23:56:14

Use a care agency means less paperwork for you and more accountability if they don't show up. Or find someone yourself. I'm a younger disabled person I advertise on gumtree then interview check
References then use a payroll company to sort wages. They charge around £12-15 month for 1-3 carers.
He may be entitled to on going care from hospital if they judge him as needing support too.

mumblechum0 Fri 20-Jan-17 00:03:15

Ok thanks Akire. What's the going rate ph for a carer?

Akire Fri 20-Jan-17 00:12:42

Depends where you are and how many hours you are looking at. I pay around £10-12 hour. Agency fees are around £16-18 hour. I'm London

You also need liability insurance if you employ directly that's around £65-150 a year. Look at fish insurence. But the higher rate includes legal advice how hire to hire fire or other issues. You also need to register HMRC as employer and sort out pension. You don't need if earn less than around £160 a week but you still have tick boxes and jump through hoopes. I have probable put you offnow!!

thesandwich Fri 20-Jan-17 09:13:38

Sorry to see you here mumble. Our county council have a service where you phone and they can give you details- also a directory on line of agencies etc. Gp may be able to help or local age uk- some hospices offer paid care services alongside their other work. Try and get reccomendations. Also social services should sort ot assessment to include keysafe, pendant emergency alarm etc and other home aids. Good luck and keep asking- loads of wisdom sadly

Needmoresleep Fri 20-Jan-17 10:37:08

Agency or direct employment each bring their own problems.

First ask around. Does anyone you know: church cleaner etc know anyone who does caring. Getting someone you and your parent like and who is willing to take responsibility is the ultimate aim.

If you can't, try an agency. Ideally one which has other clients in the same area, and who can guarantee the same carer are the primary carer. (One agency sent a different girl every day. Few had any idea what they should be doing so simply gave my mother tablets, wrote in the book "she refused a shower" and left - despite the fact I was paying for an hours call but only getting five minutes. My mums sheets were not changed for 4 months.)

In terms of National Agencies I had a fairly good experience with Care Angels, who seemed to have good procedures and employ good staff. Luckily though I have been able to employ someone directly who goes above and beyond, buying my mum a sandwich if she is too ill to go to he dining room, new shoes when she needs them, take my mum for an urgent scan when the GP wanted one done, and so on. Its really hard to monitor stuff in detail if you like a long way away.

CMOTDibbler Mon 23-Jan-17 09:02:26

Sorry to see you here Mumblechum. Although I've used agency carers for my parents in the past and they were great when they needed visits several times a day, every day (small local agency in Oxfordshire), they pretty much only do what is on the list - they have their 30 minute slot and have to get onto the next person.
What keeps my parents going, especially as I live a good distance away, is their carer who was found via word of mouth - she works for herself and really cares - nags dad into getting his hair cut, is there when OT/SS visit, liases with the district nurses, pops in if she sees the ambulance, will be there to let dad in when discharged, cleans out the fridge, writes shopping lists and got them a cleaner when they needed one - so many things!
Ask everyone you possibly know in the area - church, friends of your dad, on MN (worth a punt) especially if what might work is getting up/going to bed agency carers and someone else to come for a couple of hours a day to take him shopping/cook a hot meal/do washing with him and so on, rather than someone delivering personal car iyswim.
In terms of discharge, SS should co-ordinate the supply of the initial care package as part of discharge planning as its hard to get things on short notice

mumblechum0 Mon 23-Jan-17 09:45:20

Brill, thanks all. I want to kidnap your parents' carer please CMOT!

He's broken 3 ribs in the fall, so whilst the nurses are saying he can be discharged next week, I think they're wrong tbh. It takes him 10 mins to sit on the side of the bed and there's no way he can dress himself, walk safely or make himself a meal.

I'm going to push for a Soc Sces assessment today as have to go home tomorrow. Of the 3 family members he has left, I work FT and live 250 miles away, my sister has just finished treatment for Stage 3 cancer and my niece is due to give birth on Thursday of this week so none of us are exactly available 24/7.

He's getting better in himself though, flirting with the nurses yesterday hmm grin

CMOTDibbler Mon 23-Jan-17 10:14:38

No! She's all that keeps them out of residential care and an episode of Hoarders grin

Make it absolutely, transparently, clear to the hospital and SS that there is no hands on care available from the family at all. I've found that a) elderly people tell massive lies about this to get home and b) theres massive assumptions that daughters are round the corner, not working and able to do things (I work FT, have a 10 year old, and live a good 90 minute- 2 hour drive away).

Do you think your dad would accept a short stay in a care home as convalescence? Ideally near you so if it works he could spend longer

mumblechum0 Mon 23-Jan-17 10:38:15

grin at Hoarders

No, he's adamant he doesn't want to go into any sort of residential care "because he wants to pass his money onto sis and I".

Doesn't understand that:

a) I don't need or want his money

b) It'd be much less stressful for me not to have to keep rearranging my meetings/work through the night to keep up with my work because I'm doing 7 hour trips to bloody Cumbria every other week (this has been going on pretty much non stop for over 2 years as my mum was ill for a long time before she died last year.

Old people. Much as I love them they do drive you mad sometimes.

CMOTDibbler Mon 23-Jan-17 12:17:25

They do indeed. Frequently in fact.
One of the things that I have learnt is that blaming other people is a powerful tool. So if any professional agrees with you that a stay somewhere 'just while you get stronger', then that might be represented as 'the doctor says he'd like you to go and have a stay'. This is also true of 'the nurse says you must get an alert pendant' and 'the paramedics said you needed some cleaning help'. All things brushed off when coming from you, but taken much more seriously. Vicars, GPs, and their friends are also more influential

Needmoresleep Mon 23-Jan-17 12:46:00

I would strongly recommend a convalescent spell in a good care home to build someone up after hospital. Treat it like a three week holiday. A good home will have activities as well as tasty food and will be careful about who they sit with who at meals.

Great for me as, first I could join my mum for lunch if I was on a flying visit. Second they took care of medication, discharge and subsequent liaison with the GP (communication within the NHS was rubbish) and would have arranged escorts for follow up hospital appointments if I was not able.

It also gave me a chance to assess next steps with some good informed advice based on observation of my mums capacity. (Confirmation she could not continue to live on her own.) Plus it meant that she was able to progress straight from convalescent care to sheltered housing which made things a lot easier.

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