May 24, 2012 -- Able Newsflash No.323

Care News

Mind – which runs two helplines: Infoline and a Legal line has noticed an increase in the number of people calling for advice and guidance ranging from advice regarding mental health care, to information about medication, rights of patients, etc. The increases in calls between October and April 2011-2012 were 18% and 28%.

This national advice service is used more than any other mental health information and support line and is available in England and Wales. In the year 2011-12 it responded to 40,000 contacts but still struggled to meet the huge demand from callers with 40% of calls going unanswered.

There are 166 local branches of Mind who supported approximately 250,000 people with mental health problems in 2010-11.

For an older or disabled person receiving 10 hours of care per week the average cost is now £7,077 a year for 2012-13. The cost in 2009/10 for the same number of hours was £680.00 less.

(If this hourly rate is charged for 168 hours per week i.e. 24/7, the average cost would be £2286.00 pw. Live-in care for the same number of hours is less than half of this figure)

The Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London are seeking volunteers affected with tinnitus for a research study aimed at investigating if tinnitus symptoms can be altered using transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS). The study is currently taking place at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience (ICN), University College London, 17 Queen Square, London WC1N 3AR.

Study details: For each participant, the study will last ten weeks in total and will involve twelve, one hour sessions at Queen Square. The sessions will involve filling out a questionnaire related to the participant's tinnitus and 20 minutes of treatment with tACS, followed by a repeat questionnaire. Participants will also be asked to keep a daily diary of their tinnitus symptoms and sleep quality between sessions. For further details visit the British Tinnitus Association at

In-House News

Potential clients have been visited this week in Norfolk, Cheshire and Kent.

Monitoring and review visits have taken place in Hertfordshire, Greater Manchester and Norfolk.

Potential care workers have been interviewed in Norfolk and Bristol.

Interesting Information / Statistics

The British Lung Foundation has a PenPals scheme which puts people who are affected by lung disease in touch with each other by email or post. For further information visit their web site at:

Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar both suffered from epilepsy.

Question of the Week
"My sister age 47, childless and she does not work has recently been widowed. Would she be entitled to any benefits as she only has a small amount of savings? Her husband had been in work since he left school?"

Answer : Assuming her husband had paid full National Insurance Contributions for at least one year there are State Benefits that she can apply for.

The Bereavement payment is a one off grant of £2000 payable to the bereaved spouse or civil partner. This is tax free.

A widow, who is aged from 45 years to pension age at the time of their husbands death may be able to get a Bereavement Allowance for 52 weeks. This is a taxable benefit.

You can visit and download a Bereavement Benefits pack to complete.

To claim the Bereavement payment claims must be made within 12 months of the death of the person and the Bereavement Allowance is only backdated for three months, so an early application for the Allowance would benefit your sister.

We hope you have enjoyed reading this and "see you next week".

Best Wishes,
Angela Gifford, Director
Able Community Care Ltd.

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