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Dementia - how do we pay for a care home?

(17 Posts)
Fantasisa Mon 15-Apr-19 19:49:32

My elderly MIL has dementia and FIL is her carer. We obviously help as much as we can but they aren't local to us. MIL will need to go into a home within the next year or so as she is declining mentally and physically. How do we pay for a care home for her? Is there any support we would qualify for?

PIL own their own home but have very little in the way of savings. Will it have to be sold? If so, how do we house FIL? It is such a sad end to life and the thought of him losing his home as well is very sad.

hatgirl Mon 15-Apr-19 19:53:49

For as long as FIL us living in the house they won't have to sell their home.

If MIL has savings above £23k in her name /half of and joint accounts she will gave to pay for care if not eligible for full NHS funding.

Under £23k and she will probably have to contribute a proportion of any pension/benefits she gets.

If she needs nursing care the NHS contribute about £150 a week to the pot. If she qualifies for full NHS funding (very hard to get) they will cover it all.

Google their local authority + residential charging and it should bring up more detailed information on the council website.

thesandwich Mon 15-Apr-19 19:54:41

Hopefully@hatgirl or another expert will respond but if they dont have savings above £23k from memory the local authority will fund- please contact age uk for advice and your adult social services for assessments- are they getting attendance allowance? Non means tested.
Carers uk or the carers association can also help.
There is advice and support out there- good luck.

thesandwich Mon 15-Apr-19 19:55:11

Cross post!😂

Fantasisa Mon 15-Apr-19 19:58:37

Thank you, hatgirl. I will have a look at their local authority and see what I can find out. I think it will put FIL's mind at rest although I also can't imagine him there without her.

Fantasisa Mon 15-Apr-19 20:06:44

What does it mean in regards to choosing a care home? Would we just get allocated one? Or could we choose one and use whatever funding she is eligible for?

Fantasisa Mon 15-Apr-19 20:07:11

Posted too soon - and could we top it up?

Soontobe60 Mon 15-Apr-19 20:11:13

Yes, you can choose the home, but the choice will be from a selection of homes that are able to meet her needs. You can top up the funding if you choose one that is over the cost of LA funds.
There is a fab website set up by a guy whose parents had dementia and he found it impossible to get help. I will find the link and post it.

Soontobe60 Mon 15-Apr-19 20:12:23

florentina1 Mon 15-Apr-19 20:13:02

Please contact AGEUK. They are so kind and helpful and have lots of fact sheets, with up to date figures.

Fantasisa Mon 15-Apr-19 20:16:12

Thank you, I will. FIL is doing an incredible job but he is elderly himself. I think we will need to start having these difficult conversations with him to explore the options.

I will have a look at that website, @soontobe60.

hatgirl Mon 15-Apr-19 20:16:33

It depends on the availability in the area at the time you need it.

In theory you get a choice. In reality if the type of care you need is in short supply in the area you want then you go on a waiting list and cross your fingers.

Yes you can top up (it's called a third party top up) in order to try and secure a place at a better home. Again depending on the area this will either make a massive difference in the quality of care available or make no difference at all if every care home locally has decided to charge a top up because they can due to market demands.

What you do need is a social care assessment from the local authority as that will start all the appropriate balls rolling. If they can they will try and keep MIL at home as long as possible with care at home etc, so it's worth looking into even if you think a care home isn't needed right now.

They will also go through all the options and financial implications with you in more detail.

applesarerroundandshiny Mon 15-Apr-19 20:17:25

When I had to choose a care home for my parents I started from CQC website to see appropriate homes in their area, read reports and visited those I liked the look of.

However we were self funding and if your PIL don't have savings you will probably get a social worker to help you with this if you contact Adult Services at their Local Authority.,

Floralnomad Mon 15-Apr-19 20:17:55

Do they currently have any care going in at home as that may be a good place to start with helping FIL .

Fantasisa Mon 15-Apr-19 20:26:11

They did have some care support at home but he cancelled it because it was coming too early and they were having to be woken up in order to have assistance getting her washed an dressed.

This came after a spell in hospital where I think a plan had to be put in place before she was allowed to go home.

FIL keeps trying to give us the brush off but I think we need to find out what's what a bit more.

MereDintofPandiculation Tue 16-Apr-19 09:41:07

If she needs nursing care the NHS contribute about £150 a week to the pot. If she qualifies for full NHS funding (very hard to get) they will cover it all. If you get the £150, it goes straight to the care home and you may not see any benefit. But you will be able to claim for attendance allowance, and should be able to get the higher rate, needing care day and night. But take the application form very seriously and get advice from Age UK on how to fill it in and the right words to use

If you get the full nursing care funding (very unlikely with dementia, which doesn't lead to needs which can only by fulfilled by a trained nurse) you won't be able to get attendance allowance, but then everything will be paid for you, so you won't need it.

You say they have little in the way of savings, but if they have a joint savings account, it's worth splitting it now into two separate accounts, so your MIL is assessed only on her share of the savings - it's not a problem on the first assessment, but there has been a case on MN: parents had joint savings of over the limit, say £50k, ie £25 each. So mum was self funding, and council said "come back when her savings are down to £23k. But at that point father still had £25k, so they totalled £48k between them, and Council said "it's shared savings, half each, so she's still got £24k. Still not eligible for help".

helpfulperson Wed 17-Apr-19 22:12:55

Just in case be aware the system is very different in Scotland and probably in Wales.

Other tip were given was to pick somewhere that the local authority will fund once funding moves to them otherwise he may have to go through a distressing move.

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