Astonishingly, lawyers report that ageing parents are drawing up legal documents to make clear that they would rather die than allow excessive care home fees to eat into their children’s inheritance. Elderly people know that savings can be whittled away by care bills and many say in documents they do not wish to be kept alive and dependent on costly care.
What Are The Costs Of Being In A Care Home?
Care home fees for self-funders are on average between £600 and £870 a week although a growing number charge more than £1,000 a week. More than two in five care home residents are paying the full cost of their care, up almost a third in the past ten years as a result of cuts to state funding. The burden of care costs is increasingly falling on families as a result.
In the past year to cover the new national living wage, care home providers have doubled or trebled the ‘top-up fees’ to make up the shortfall for residents who qualify for means-tested council-funded care and the care home fees. According to Age UK, 48,000 elderly people in residential care are now part-funded by top-ups and with huge regional variations the southeast is most affected. Councils will only fund care for the elderly once their assets have fallen below £23,500.
Will Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) Really Protect Families From Huge Care Bills?
There are two types of LPA, one for property and financial affairs and one for health and welfare decisions. Karon Walton, director of Solicitors for the Elderly, warned that signing an LPA is not enough to protect families from huge care bills, commenting that: ”If it is one’s wish to refuse certain care this can be outlined in their LPA; however, doctors and attorneys are still required to act in the best interests of the individual” adding that: “Once someone has lost capacity, an attorney cannot refuse certain care or treatment on their behalf for financial reasons – even if they know this is what the individual would have wanted”.
How Can Elderly People Stay Safe And Stay Put In Their Own Home For Longer?
As well as many elderly people preferring the independence and dignity of remaining in their own homes for as long as is safe and practical to do so, it’s rapidly becoming apparent that it could be a more financially astute option as well. As a result, more and more middle-aged adults coping with ageing parents and relatives are seeking out assistive technology solutions to discreetly monitor an elderly person, whether infirm, disabled or with memory problems. More specifically, those who live alone and some distance away and just at the very point of needing some form or combination of care arrangements as an alternative to going into a home, and endangering the potential depletion of their assets.
Fortunately, care homes aren’t the only caring solution!
ARC Angel is one such modern-day solution; a monitoring and alert system fitted to the home not the person, and warns a carer of changes of routine of that person around the home, changes possibly caused by being immobilised after a fall or being stuck undetected in the bath! A wireless movement sensor in each room monitors the home; it can tell where they are and how long they have been there and whether they are in or they are out. The carer sets the alert criteria, and ARC Angel sends them a text if anything out of the ordinary occurs. It can be used on a standalone basis or as part of an individual’s care package within the home to provide round-the-clock assurance for family members. In many cases, ARC Angel costs less than one week’s stay in a care home!
Where to Buy ARC Angel
ARC Angel is only available online at www.arc-angel.co.uk and rapid delivery to the UK mainland is free. For more advice and a brochure, call our UK-based Care Line on 01245 860252 9am-5pm Mon-Fri. There is a reduced price if the person you are caring for is eligible for VAT relief.