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The price of caregiving

brisinger  Male  Lancashire 29-Aug-2019 16:02 Message #4750047
I make no apologies that I will lose it from time to time because being a 24/7 caregiver is a whole different ballgame to one where you are at arms length to a person you care for, finish a shift and go home to recharge your batteries. It's a comment many in the profession make when they suddenly have to care 24/7. We are all only human after all and it raises the bar to a whole new level. In my case I have to live in the present because at the moment there is no future, no cure for Alzheimer's. It will only get worse.
One of the biggest risks is not getting any break and suffering from caregiver burnout. The governments must spend millions on treating carergiver burnout and related mental health problems that may possibly be saved if funds are put in place to give extra support to prevent it in the first place. That's not political, just an observation. Perhaps it could be structured so that it is not capital per se but a few weeks paid for annual holiday leave whether you are a self funder or not. Maybe a few weeks basic cost respite could be provided and it's your choice if you want to pay for an upgrade. It could be a way of stemming the tide before they reach crisis point. There's many people who are classed as self-funders purely because they own their own home, not because they are millionaires. Let's face it in today's society there's not many properties that cost less than £23,000. When you consider carers amount to the equivalent cost of a 2nd NHS it's peanuts. Currently one of the things that happens is that there are repeat hospital admissions as a direct result. I think it was quoted that a bed per night is £2000-3000. Your thoughts on stemming the tide. Please keep the parties out of it and don't let the Trolls make it a political football.
Witheflow  Male  North Yorkshire 29-Aug-2019 18:11 Message #4750054
Without being too political. I suggest you contact your local MP and propose that later option. Again, without being labelled a political Troll, that will depend on your MP's political/ideological persuasion. Good luck Bris.
dragonfever  Male  Warwickshire 29-Aug-2019 18:48 Message #4750057
IMHO caring is a bubble waiting to burst.

Care workers are in the main, poorly pair, overworked, and poorly managed by care companies that appear to be treating care provision as a cash cow being milked for all they can. It is an industry both with a very high staff turnover, and one facing increasing demand for it's services (not a good position for any business). Add in the post-code lottery for the funding available for care county to county, and it becomes even more fragile.

Sorry brisinger, I think you were asking about caregivers - ie non-employed care support. I completely agree these people typically carry the well being of two (themselves and the person being cared for), yet they receive very little, if any support. Should they become unable to continue giving care, or become in need of more assistance themselves, the sudden increase in cost is way out of balance. Sadly I feel care is another area where there is lack of political will to invest in prevention, and of course everyone loses.
wonderoushen  Female  Gwynedd 29-Aug-2019 18:58 Message #4750059
It looks like its going to get worse too as councils haven't been given a budget for care contracts for next year, or at least in England, I thank my lucky stars that social care is a devolved issue here and whilst under huge strain does still exist.
brisinger  Male  Lancashire 29-Aug-2019 22:36 Message #4750111
Care workers are sometimes in an impossible position whereby they are contracted to visit a person for a set period of time. It only needs one client to need a larger time slot than was allocated and the whole network is at risk of collapse because of the lack of fallback time. The system usually relies on the principle of some people not needing as much time allocated which can be reallocated to another client.
wonderoushen  Female  Gwynedd 30-Aug-2019 10:48 Message #4750159
It does Bris, the carers who came to my dad worked far more than their contracted hours, they were lovely dedicated women many quite young who gave up their own time to care for their patients, they were always patient and kind with everyone and a joy to have around.
tumbled  Male  Gloucestershire 30-Aug-2019 11:03 Message #4750161
The night my Mum died, one of the nurses sat with her through the night, held her hand and sang to her, even though my Mum was in the last stages of the brain tumour and seemingly unaware....very moving..
BOYDEL  Male  Surrey 31-Aug-2019 09:47 Message #4750303
Respite Care is available but of course at a pro rata cost in a Care Home - assuming they have a spare place available - but with costs around £1000 plus per week it's like paying for an expensive holiday.

The NHS was set up largely to provide acute short term care - in an era when only 37% of the population survived to age 60 - and with that survivor cohort having mostly passed on by age 70. Obvs the cohort born 1888 or earlier were those who suffered up to 50% child mortality largely due to inadequate sanitation etc. Better healthcare/improved lifestyles have added many yrs to average lifespan and today over 91% survive to age 60 and that cohort can expect close to 20 further years of survival.

Today UK has 3.7 million people aged 75 or over - and that age group comprises 90% of the circa 580,000 people in Care Homes - though it is estimated that another 6 to 7 million people are cared for at home by a partner/relative. That is a massive problem in the modern era when we no longer have multigenerational living eg with up to 4 generations of a family living under same roof.
BOYDEL  Male  Surrey 31-Aug-2019 09:53 Message #4750305
Agreed - Bupa Care Home Survey flags that the care sector overall permanently loses 2/3rds of staff every 2 yrs.

Those providing Home Care are typically not paid for travel time between clients - hence many will in effect earn way less than the min wage for actual time spent on the job.

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