December 01, 2011 -- Able Newsflash No.299

Care News

Care agencies and residential care homes write for references when they are considering taking on new care workers. Able Community Care has noted an increasing problem in obtaining references that are of value and I believe other care providers may have experienced the same problems.

Upon writing for a reference for a potential care worker from another care provider, we send a standard reference request letter asking for details which includes asking for their care workers past history with them. Some companies choose not to answer our reference questions and simply send a reply to us giving a start date and last calendar date when the care worker was in post. No other information is offered and no information given of how many weeks/months/years that carer has actually worked, etc.

Able Community Care telephone checks every reference and when we have received references with only dates, upon making the telephone call to the company, no further information comes from them.

This procedure is unsafe and can allow care workers who are not suitable to work with older and disabled people to continue working in the care field.

NHS information – The average daily cost of providing a hospital bed is now estimated at £255.00. These figures mean the NHS bill for bed-blocking is now over £3.5 million a week.

Charity shops get 80% rate relief which is important to them as they strive to raise funds for their charity.

For example Help the Hospices has 167 hospices which last year raised more than £40m to help provide the care for more than 360,000 seriously ill people and the rate relief is of paramount importance to them.

There is a suggestion in the media, led by Mary Portas, which aims to re-generate retail businesses and help ‘start up’ retail businesses by giving businesses a similar amount of rate relief and, at the same time, limiting the number of charity shops in the High Streets of our towns and cities.

The Charity Retail Association has said that “such a proposal would hit charities fundraising options at a time of unpresidented cuts.”

In addition a recent survey showed that nearly 66% of people on low incomes frequented charity shops.

In-House News

Prospective clients have been visited in Norfolk, Hampshire, Somerset and Wales.

Monitoring and training sessions have taken place in Hertfordshire and Nottinghamshire.

Pop in visits also were made in these areas.

Two potential live-in carers have been interviewed.

A new post has commenced in Norfolk for an older gentleman with Alzheimer’s disease. Care Manager is Sam. Wage is £ inc.

For our Jersey readers: Le Quesne’s Pharmacy of Don St. St Helier is offering free of charge, collection, and delivery of GP prescriptions, medication and other items sold in the shop. Also, customised blister-packing of medication if required. For further details please ring Kate or Linda on 01534 722571

Interesting Information / Statistics

The earliest recorded blood transfusion was for Pope Innocent in 1492 who had suffered an apoplectic stroke. The blood of 3 or 4 young adults was extracted by crude methods and given to the Pope. The Pope and the donors later died.

One of our readers has begun a petition re: cuts to benefits and services which are falling on disabled people, their carers and families. If you would like to know more please visit: and

Question of the Week
"I live in a block of flats where I have always felt safe. I have a chain on my door which I always keep on. However, in the last few weeks there have been a couple of unpleasant incidents re people who are not local and I feel uncomfortable about opening my door even with the chain on. I think a spy hole would be a good idea do you know who installs them and how much it costs?"

Answer : Spy holes are a good idea and my suggestion would be to contact your local Age UK (Concern) and speak to them about their Handyman Service. Spy holes are included in this service. There is a cost but the work would be carried out by a respected person and the cost would be fair. If you do not have a Handyman Service in your area you could contact your local police station and ask to speak to the Crime Prevention team, who will be able to assist you.

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