Clear and simple guidance to help older people find their way through the care maze
Home Care, also known as Domiciliary Care
You may have decided to remain in your own home instead of moving in to a residential care home. There are different types of Homecare, with different terms to describe them such as home help, care attendants, care assistants and "carers". Your local authority should have recommended the type of care you need and when you should receive it in your care and support plan. Homecare may include: personal care, such as washing or dressing, housekeeping or domestic work, such as vacuuming, cooking or preparing meals, nursing and health care. Some Domiciliary Care providers offer a service where a companion care worker makes your life easier and more enjoyable. They’ll help you with anything, from company and friendship to personal care and household chores.
Homecare may be for short periods, two or three times a day, short breaks to give a family carer respite, emergancy care, or even 24 hour "live-in" care.
Sheltered Housing/ Housing with Care
Given the choice most people would like to remain living in their own home for the rest of their life. Sometimes this is no longer possible and moving into a Care home is too big a step. Most local authorities provide schemes or work with other organistaions that do so, that provide housing that also provides the care and support they need to stay as independent as possible. This type of support would most likely be recommended by your local authority in your care and support plan.
Types of Residential care
There are two main types of care homes - residential care homes that provide care and support throughout the day and night. The staff will help you with washing, dressing, toileting and feeding, and you should be in a safe and supportive environment. The other type of care home is a residential care home with nursing which provides the the same level of support as a residential care home but with the addition of having around the clock medical care available from qualified nurses.
Some care homes may also specialise in certain disabilities and conditions, such as dementia. These care homes may or maynot provide nursing care as well.
Your local authority should help you find a suitable care home, in addition to that certain charities, such Age UK, may provide help, there are various websites where you can search care homes in your area, and the industry's regulator The Care Quaility Commission (CQC) has search facilities and information on each care home. Details of links can be found later on your local home page.
When selecting residential care it is important to make sure the home can provide the level and quality of care you require. It would be good to feel at home their too. Just as importantly, your family should be happy with your new home.
If your care is going to be paid for by your local authority the home you select will have to accept the amount your local authority will pay, unless someone else is happy to pay the difference.
If you are paying for your own care, it is very important to understand what will happen if your money runs out. It may be in your interest to select a care home that is not too expensive if you think your money could run out. Ask the home if they will accept local authority funding. If in doubt speak to a specialist care funding adviser ASAP