So much has been happening the past few days I just haven’t had time to sit down and write.
It’s good to be able to do so now, with a whole series of positives.
The biggest relief – although tinged with a resigned sadness – is that my dad has been awarded CHC (continuing health care) funding, which means the NHS will be responsible for paying for all his nursing home fees.
It’s been a long process – more than three months since he first went in for respite care. It’s a very detailed assessment, covering every aspect of health and ability. Dad scored severe or high in 5 out of 11 categories.
The 56-page document concludes that his needs “exceed what might reasonably be expected of a local authority to provide and so constitute a primary health need”.
Or, as the social worker put it: “Your dad is so poorly that a few years ago he would have been looked after in hospital by now.”
But, of course there are no long term hospital beds. People with intensive and complex needs like my dad are at the mercy of market forces, the private homes that vary so much in their service and price.
We’ve been lucky to find an excellent home for dad, where the staff are so caring and kind, and he has settled well.
But it can be a fraught, problematic process. I heard this week that another long-established home we’d tried to get dad into, has just closed, having been under recent investigation by social services.
What a worry for the relatives of those people who had to be moved. And what of relatives who’s loved ones are very poorly, but don’t quite meet the requirements for CHC funding, where finance becomes a dominant issue.
It is a relief that dad’s care will be paid for the by the NHS, but I’m sad to think how ill he’s become in order to qualify.
Ironically, my mum’s increasing poor health has also had a knock-on “bonus” this week, moving her higher up the housing need ladder, as she’s finding it more difficult to negotiate the stairs and layout of her cottage home. Lots of forms to fill in, but luckily ticking the right boxes.
My brush with public authorities and paperwork is continuing in a good way with a Disclosure and Barring Service form to complete, in order to be accredited as a run group leader by England Athletics.
I did the Run in England Leadership in Running Fitness course last weekend, and am looking forward to leading runs at my local club, and also setting up some sessions in our village to share my passion for running with others.
They’re encouraging people to complete a marathon distance in a month in May – less than a mile a day, so attainable for many.
It even made front page news in the local paper.
You can read more here – on the front of the Pulman’s Ottery edition and also page 8……
I’d say that all adds up to a good news week – wouldn’t you!