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Care & carers

care home crisis

(14 Posts)
sneetch Wed 08-Jun-11 14:43:24

Do you know anyone who is affected by the closure of Southern Cross? I am at the point of having to find a care home for my mother and I am terrified by the reports you hear and the idea the private homes may be on the point of going bust.

glassortwo Wed 08-Jun-11 15:44:27

Just heard on the news that Southern cross are axing 3000 jobs, how can they lose that many staff without it causing problems.

gma Thu 09-Jun-11 10:35:04

My ma in law was in a Southern Cross home for only 6 weeks before she died.. The staff situation was horrendous so what will it be like if they axe 3000 posts now. Perhaps the clients will do their own washing and ironing and cook all their own food, and still pay upwards of £500 per week for the priviledge. How many of these posts to be axed will be managerial I wonder, there always seemed to be several 'managers' in the office. hmm

eGJ Thu 09-Jun-11 21:31:53

I have a relative in a Southern Cross Care Home (under the auspices of Ashbourne Senior Living) ITHe Home is rather like a middle level Best Western Hotel. Great carers, nurses, food and such patience with the patients (sorry clients) There are plenty of staff there at present and only one manager in an office, the deputy managers are all out in the centre of things and always on hand. We will hear about the staff wastage or closures when it is finally announced from the Board. However we don't have a Plan B to fall back on. The general thinking is that someone will buy the debts and the homes, but we are in the dark like the staff and the rest of the world.

daddydaycare51 Tue 14-Jun-11 02:30:32

eGJ==> Sorry to put a dampner on this but there is no way it would be financially sound for anybody to buy out a company that is loosing nearly £1million a month. Also they are trying to give back to local councils some 132 properties that they can no longer afford the rents on.
This is what happens when a company overstretches itself.

absentgrana Tue 14-Jun-11 14:08:56

eGJ and daddydaycare51 The big problem with Southern Cross was a business plan that depended on property values – nothing to do with the cost of staff or so on. It is just one more example of greed – selling the property and leasing it back didn't work and it's the residents who will suffer.

newt148 Tue 12-Jul-11 15:26:32

having worked in a top a class care home, all I can say is that the quality of care including the staff is awful, and visiting many of lower quality and often council care homes,All were as bad.

many speak in heavy accents hence the patients cannot understand them, and are then accused of being racist, plus the staff had very little training in care, movement or even the art of conversation which when two staff are in the room the conversation is over the patient in their own language,

all patients are put into Pads/nappies to enable the staff ease of work rather then taking the patients to the loo (its time consuming) The bladder and bowel do not have memory and so in the long term all urges to go the toilet are ignored and the pads are used............Easy change twice a day, nappy rash!

putting patients into wheel chairs was terrible no consideration for comfort so it was one go, dump and leave regardless of perhaps, the bottom was not comfortable and then the patient cannot move all day.

food was usually good but feeding ugh....spoons shoved into mouths becuae they were not quick enough or totally ignored after not being able to use the cutlery or even see the food........Some staff were great but outnumbered by the cheaper staff...........
many who liked to sit and watch the patients in case they did in fact move.........TV always on regardless of patients, and the horseshoe shape permanent..........
WE need a New Care ideal and watchdog this is the future, as many of us live longer, so surely the staff who will be employed in this industry should be good, trained and informed what CARE means

FlicketyB Tue 12-Jul-11 16:50:35

Newt148, Yes care homes like this exist but there are also many care homes that are not. I have been responsible for elderly relatives who have been in both lower price and higher priced homes and in both cases they were well looked after, although to be fair, neither of them was/is bed bound, incontinent or unable to could feed themselves. I also visited a number of care homes when I worked for a charity for the elderly. Most of those I saw were good and some I would have been willing to be in myself.

But we need to be realistic about how much good care costs. Currently fees average around £500 - £600 a week, and some Councils set their rates even lower than that. £500 - £600 a week is around £ 80.00 a day. What reasonable quality hotel could provide full board and lodging and laundry for that price, let alone provide personal service with help with washing, dressing, on call staff day and night, nurses inhouse, activities and entertainment? yet this is what we expect Care Homes to do, no wonder some of them are so poor.

newt148 Tue 12-Jul-11 19:59:03

Flickerty B, Yep I do know of many care homes which unlike Southern Cross or many of the others do make a home a home, but the large majority are out to make money.and the large majority of patients did in fact pay by earning throughout their lives for care in old age which was promised then,when the system was set up, now I realise its not possible but the standards could improve so much..and I totally agree but the hotel sounds good to me....

no all aside its rather worrying to consider all the options and again its a lottery as to where we exist or end up......hopefully not for a long time to come.............Eat Drink and Be merry (whilst we can)

Dilley Wed 30-Nov-11 17:21:43

I need a good care home in Calderdale for my husband who has bed sores. I am only looking for a week or fortnight at a time for respite as I need to recuperate every now and then as being a carer is very tiring and emotionally draining.He needs nursing care and is bed bound at the moment.

snowbird Fri 19-Apr-13 12:50:16

Dilly have you thougtht of private carers? I did that job in my latter working years.People can stay in thier own homes and a live in carer will do everything for you. Lots of people looking for that sort of work in The Lady mag .

HUNTERF Mon 22-Apr-13 09:34:16


Your suggestion may be ok for people with physical disabilities.
I have never had relatives with dementia but I have visited homes with these sort of people in and I could tell they could do some very irrational things.
They could do things like leave the gas on etc.


snowbird Mon 22-Apr-13 13:01:31

Hi,Frank, just a bit about my job when i was a home carer.
Lots had dememtia ,phyisical disabilities,just back from hospital and even some with suicidal tendancies,breavement,and just people who simply didnt like to be alone in the house.
A good carer does everything from all the housework to PA work.
You name it and Ive done it lol.
I worked for an agency for 10 years and some are good . If you are thinking of this its fairly expensive but cheaper than a home and the person is in familiar surroundings.

HUNTERF Mon 22-Apr-13 15:19:16


Home care may be ok if the dementia is not too severe but I have helped people get NHS funding and I have sat in on assessments in care homes.
On one occasion a man was getting violent with one of the women carers and I just happened to be passing.
Even though I am a reasonably fit man he had an enormous amount of strength and almost overpowered me and the carer.
Fortunately the carer slipped away for a few seconds and got another male and female carer in.
It really took the 4 of us to get the situation under control.
I don't know what had happened because the man was not there when I visited the next time but he clearly needed more than 1 person to control him.