Home Care Packages

Signed mum up for a Home Care Package and I feel guilty

I have arranged and had mum sign for a Home Care Package.  I feel guilty.  Mum questions why she needs it.

After 5 weeks of been on call 24/7, running to and from mum, taking her to numerous specialists and doctor appointments, doing her banking, taking her to social activities, doing her washing, shopping, having scripts filled out for her, cooking, buying and doing anything she has suddenly needed – and needed immediately – I finally started to research for support.  For me!

As a result, Mum starts with Glendale Care providing care support this morning! I am praying that Glendale Care have women who are friendly, caring, trustworthy with a happy disposition. And then I pray that mum will actually stay with using the package.

I understand she questions, as currently she only pays for a taxi or community car on a Thursday with total cost of I think about 8 or 10 dollars. The Home Support cleaner once a fortnight costs nothing. However as of 1 July, all costs will go up. If you need a community car you will be charged the same for 2 kms as going 10 kms.

But they don’t yet know what the charges will actually be.

The cleaner who costs nothing  there will be a charge, but they don’t know what the charge will be….

So with everyone advising me to get mum on a package that she had been approved of receiving, and with the thought of costs going up, and extra support for me, I did. But mum in her head cannot see why she needs it – some days she is good for a few hours, others, barely leaves her chair or unit. So fingers crossed.

But if she doesn’t want to be in it, we can cancel. I hope she gives it at least a month though, to settle in. any of the 5 hours she doesn’t use, she can bank….so they are accessible, if I as her carer am sick, or away, or she suddenly needs extra support. Bloody exhausting!

Within a short space of time I have become physically, emotionally mentally exhausted. Now add to that a feeling of guilt. A niggling feeling that I have sold mum out.

A feeling that I have handed her over to someone else. A feeling of not giving her enough time. A feeling of deserting mum. A feeling of being selfish.  A feeling of having her spend $136 un necessarily per fortnight.

I also have a feeling of pending relief.

And also as mum keeps questioning me – a feeling that this care package might be short lived.

I only became aware of the packages, when she was in hospital two weeks ago, when one of the nurses took me aside and suggested I look into getting one, as she had looked at mum’s record and saw she had been approved

The lovely nurse spoke to mum – well yelled – as this was before I had finally had mum’s hearing issues greatly improved/fixed.  She suggested mum have the Level 1 and 2 package.

Mum’s response was that she wasn’t ready for the support help yet. That she had a cleaner one a fortnight and she had me!  The nurse responded that she felt that ‘your daughter is ready for it!”  I could have hugged her.  Mum of course was dismissive – she had me – at her beck and call whenever she wanted.

The lovely nurse, took me aside and said – here is a pamphlet – I happen to know that this small care provider has a spare package available – they are hard to get – most have waiting lists. The reason – the new Aged Care charges and process to come into place from 1st July 2015.

So over two days I had a massive learning curve.  Every care provider I called – even those who provided mum with the cleaner, or a car to take her when I was not available to doctor or social activity as well as other current carers…everyone without fail said – if you find an available care provider with a package, take it…they are rare…even if she is not 100% ready….if you can get her signed up before all the changes take it!

OMG………Home Care Packages – these are fantastic!

A Home Care Package is an assistance package designed to allow elderly people to remain in their own homes for as long as possible. The most common types of supports are: assistance with bathing, dressing, mobility, preparing meals, continence management, cleaning, laundry services, gardening, home maintenance, transport to attend medical appointments or social activities, nursing, allied health and therapy services.

So mum wrote out two pages of questions today – when I dropped in to help my son set up a new TV for her room that we had gone out and bought, to deliver her bread she requested as well as socks she needed – and of course they are the wrong socks – ARGH!

So here are two pages – of reasons why she could do without the package. I sat and wrote the answers – as it is easier to do that than talk.

I have explained that after a month, we can review and if she decides it is not helpful we can cancel or go to another provider if she is not happy.

At this stage the support is:

Tuesday – strip bed, put all washing on, clean unit, hang out washing, get mum’s lunch, or do some preparation/cooking for an evening meal, extras depending on need include clean fridge/freezer, panty, sweep courtyard, spray weeks in courtyard, wash window…just whatever needs doing, and then drive mum to her cards.  I then get the whole day, and will pick mum up at 3.45 from cards. OMG…I LOVE this!  But I feel guilty!

Wednesday – bring washing in and fold it. Drive mum to cards.  Woo Hoo. This gives me the whole day for me. I will pick mum up from cards again at 3.45pm and take her shopping.

Thursday – Drive mum to cards and also pick her up and bring her home.  Well I just can’t do Thursday as I care for my little grand daughters.

I pray she loves the women who come and that she settles down to accepting them and their support. Any of the 5 hours – she wont’ use them all – that she does not use each week, get ‘banked’. This means if her needs for any reason escalate – or I am sick and unable to help, she can then use these banked hours.

I am still there for her 24/7.  I still do heaps of running around. See her, make contact each day. Take mum out, do all the extras…but this will give me some time……for me. To do somethings for myself and also with the hubby.

Why do I feel terrible?  But I pray and hope that this all works out!

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