Care Questions : Article 44Care Questions : Article 44

Your Care Questions Answered by Angela Gifford - ARTICLE No.44

"My Mother is now in her middle seventies and becoming frail. She has various assets including her house, other property and a few stocks and shares. She would consider a nursing or residential home but, if possible, would rather like to stay in her own home.

Both she and I are finding it difficult to know how to raise funding. Should we sell this or that, what do we invest in if we do sell something?

How can such investments pay for care and for how long? We have many questions and would like to make contact with reputable people or companies who can advise us. Can you help? "

Answer : You need to talk to a Financial Advisor who has the qualification CF8. This means that he or she has a certificate which shows that he or she fully understands the issues of long term care planning. The certificate also indicates that the financial advisor has the skills to advise you on how you can also interact with the current statutory care provisions.

The advisor in conjunction with other professionals, e.g. estate agents who may value your property, stockbrokers/banks for valuing your share portfolio, etc. will then be able to ascertain your financial situation and advise you accordingly.

Currently, very few financial advisors have the CF8 certificate but an organisation called Symponia will give you details of the CF8 Financial Advisor in your area. Their telephone number is 01789 774595.

"My Father lives in Scotland but says that he is unable to get the Attendance Allowance to help pay for care that he needs. Is this correct?"

Answer : Yes. Personal care in Scotland is free unlike in England and Wales. Therefore the Attendance Allowance, which is given to help towards the purchase of any personal care that is only given outside Scotland.

"My Mother is going into a care home and I would like to know what the authorities will look at when they are judging if she has to pay or they will provide all or part of the cost?"

Answer : I am assuming that your Mother is going to move into a care home on a permanent basis; if so the cost she will have to pay depends on her income and capital. If her capital is less than £12,750 then just her income will be looked at. If she has more than £21,000 in capital then the full cost of the care will be paid for by her.

Capital includes: bank or building society accounts, National Savings Certificates, Bonds, PEPs, Tessas, ISAs and shares.

Income includes: retirement pension, pension credit, income support, private or occupational pensions and any annuities or trust funds.

If any of the above are jointly owned then only your Mother's share of these assets is taken into consideration.

"I have an aunt and I am her closest relative. Recently the care agency that she has carried out a risk assessment and advised me that in their opinion the bed she was sleeping on and her commode chair (both many years old) were not really suitable for her disability and could actually cause her problems in the future.

I rang her local surgery to arrange an assessment in order that we could be given advice as to what kind of furniture would best suit my aunt only to be told it could be arranged but that there might be a wait of six months.

Rather than hear on the phone that my aunt has had a fall or worse because of her present situation I would like some information about where else I might be able to get some advice."

Answer : If you do not wish to wait this length of time for the statutory professional advice you may wish to obtain the services of an Occupational Therapist yourself to enable you to make the right choice much quicker.

You can do this by contacting the Occupational Therapists in Independent Practice (UK) on 08003894873 or by going to their website at

They will be able to give you details of a practitioner in your locality.

(An interesting statistic is that the above site has been visited over 75,000 times in less than five years.)

"Do you know if it possible to still buy smelling salts?"

Answer : Yes it is. A company by the name of Mackenzies manufactures them and you should be able to get them from any local chemist.