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‘Live in care’ is the full-time homecare alternative to moving into a care home. Arranging live in care provides peace of mind for all the family and combines one-to-one care with the independence of life at home.
‘The Live-in Care Hub’ is an impartial information resource and a friendly point of contact where you can learn all you need to help make a decision about arranging live in home help for yourself or a relative.
There are many excellent live in care agencies and we are here to help you find the perfect one for you and your family.
Could you or a relative benefit from the round-the-clock support of a professional, qualified and vetted carer?
Someone to live with you and provide help with (for example):
Many CCGs are seeking expressions of interest from residential and nursing homes willing to help during the COVID-19 crisis and free up hospital beds as they ramp up discharges.
Live-in care is a safer alternative to discharging people into a care home as it mitigates the risk of COVID-19 cross-transmission between care home residents. Instead people are professionally cared for in their own home.
Bespoke elderly care in the form of round-the-clock live-in care can help provide a life-enhancing alternative to residential care.
With a growing elderly population comes the need for increased social care provision. Residential care homes are already struggling to cope with demand and the NHS struggles with bed blocking because older people don’t always have an appropriate place to go to following their recovery from illness.
The UK statistics might surprise you:
For these reasons, and many more, live-in care has risen in popularity as a viable alternative to residential care.
This is where a person is able to stay in their own home, cared for by a professional carer who is able to help them stay safe, secure and maintain the best possible quality of life.
It is also worth noting that the vast majority of people would rather be cared for in their own home. Our research has revealed that 97% of people do not want to go into a home if they become unwell or unable to look after themselves.
For the future of care here in the UK, live-in 24/7 care is a really important alternative to residential care homes, which for many people are not the preferred choice, or even available in some instances.
Most residential care homes operate in a ‘one size fits all’ routine where staff help all clients get dressed and ready for the day at the same time, and they are all dressed for bed at the same time, eat at the same time, and are moved into the same areas at the same time.
Of course, staff do their best to provide the best possible help, but it is well publicised that carers in care homes struggle to spend much quality time with their clients because of the limits placed on the time they have available.
With live-in care, the level of help and support is completely tailored to the needs of the client because the care is 1-to-1. Carers working in their client’s home are able to completely excel in their duties, offering the kind of care they were trained to provide. The basic duties of a carer providing live-in 24/7 care at home usually include:
Live-in carers may also provide additional services unique to the client’s needs including, but not limited to:
Of course, individual packages are individually priced and the amount of work completed by a carer is reflected in the cost. However, it is important to know that you can have a care package completely tailored to your needs and one that is comparable in price, or sometimes less expensive, than a residential care home. A package that is completely focused on providing the best possible quality of life whether it is simple or more complex in its arrangements.
Get in touch to find out more, because the more informed you are, the better you will be able to make the best decision with or for your loved one.
A recent survey of live-in care providers by The Live-in Care Hub has given a deeper insight into this type of care in the United Kingdom. It has revealed, as have many previous independent surveys, that care in the home by skilled, professional live-in carers offers significantly better outcomes for older people in terms of both their physical and mental health and also their quality of life. They are less likely to suffer falls and urinary tract infections (UTIs) and far less likely to succumb to highly contagious viruses such as the corona virus.
These better health outcomes are the result of the dedicated one-to-one care provided by an experienced live-in carer. A dedicated carer is vigilant to signs of UTIs and, because they live in your home, they are more aware of trip hazards and simply more often in the same room to help prevent falls, which can so often lead to serious mobility problems. When it comes to cross transmission of highly contagious viruses risks are far lower because carers are only looking after a single client in one dwelling (or sometimes a couple in the same house).
In care homes where carers and other staff regularly come into close contact with numerous elderly people the chances of illnesses being quickly transmitted to all residents throughout the care home are very high. We have seen this tragic situation in care homes during the corona virus pandemic at a time when seniors receiving 24/7 care in their own homes had only a tiny fraction of deaths from COVID-19 compared to those in care homes.
What is a clear difference between professional live-in care and care homes is the flexibility of live-in care to enable older people to live their lives in the way that suits them in their later years. When to eat, what to eat, when to go to bed, when to get up, what to do for entertainment, who to socialise with – these are fundamental rights for all of us. Why deny yourself those choices by moving into a residential care home just because you are that bit older and need some help with daily living?
Live-in care provides everything a care or nursing home can provide – just better. It can provide help with simple domiciliary care, personal care or respite care, but also dementia care or stroke care, where necessary, 24 hours a day. Tailored to you as an individual, enabling you to stay in your own home surrounded by all your possessions collected over a long life; and allowing you to remain part of your community. Imagine having to condense your whole life into a single room – no matter how lovely that room is? And being close to friends and neighbours you have know for a long time is far preferable to suddenly being surrounded by strangers and having to make new friends in later life.
The live-in care organisations polled in the most recent study were varied in size with some offering services to a small number of clients in a specific part of the UK, whilst others were larger organisations with thousands of clients offering their service right across the UK, including on the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. What was clear from all these providers, regardless of their size and national reach, was that they all offered a flexible, adaptable service aimed at providing a highly-personalised service for every individual client. All of them are rated by the Care Quality Commission CQC.
The range of issues that live-in carers deal with is wide and varied. For many older people, having a live-in carer is as much about safety and security, as it is about care. But for other families, live-in care is invaluable in managing serious medical conditions such as dementia, Parkinson’s, loss of mobility, MS and physical disabilities.
Live-in care has sometimes been confused with companion care, which is more of a ‘light’ touch to care, focused on company, cooking meals and shopping trips. Whilst these are undoubtedly part of the service on offer through a live-in carer, virtually all the organisations who responded listed ‘end of life’ care as part of what they provide and have provided.
In other words, live-in care is as adaptable as it is specialist yet care costs are comparable to a care or nursing home. Skilled carers can live in and provide the scale of care that their elderly clients need. And when care needs change then the care provided can expand to meet the clients’ needs. Where necessary in co-ordination with nursing care, although some live-in carers do have nursing experience.
This means that live-in care is one of the most flexible and adaptable forms of social care. It is a permanent solution, giving peace of mind to both the client and their family. Knowing elderly relatives are being looked after by a skilled, committed carer who can dedicated all their time and energy to their one client is the ideal sort of care for older people. It ensures they can live their later years with dignity, always have companionship and know that their health and quality of life will be the best it can possibly be.
Old people and their families can choose from a fully-managed live-in care service where a care agency manages all the arrangements with the carers and ensures ongoing training and professional development of their staff. Alternatively, some agencies offer a simple introductory service, matching the right live-in carers with their elderly clients. There are also a small number of organisations who offer live-in nursing service, a solution that many people turn to towards the end of life.
Whatever type of service you choose to fulfil your requirement for care in your own home you can rest assured that all carers from the providers who are members of the Live-in Care Hub will be trained, vetted professionals whose aim is to provide individual care tailored to your health needs and your personal preferences.
Live-in care is part of a growing trend for seniors to ensure they have the quality of care they deserve and need for a healthy and happy later life. Although currently comprising a much smaller percentage of all senior care in the UK than care homes places it has been well-established for many years. It’s currently increasing popularity is a result of growing awareness of the benefits and the affordability of this type of care and a recognition that there are better alternatives than care homes.
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about 24-hour elderly care. These live-in care FAQs will hopefully provide some of the answers to the questions you have about care in your own home in later life.
WHAT IS LIVE-IN CARE?
Live in care is as simple as it sounds. An experienced carer lives with you in your own home 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help you achieve a higher quality of life and this can involve:
➤ Providing help with specific tasks
➤ Providing company
➤ Enabling you to remain independent as much as possible
➤ Providing a sense of security
24-hour support can be tailor made and match you with the right carer or team of carers that can offer:
➤ Assistance with bathing and dressing
➤ Cooking nutritious meals
➤ Medication reminders
➤ Companionship and outings
➤ Housekeeping and laundry
➤ Getting ready for bed
➤ Pet care
HOW DOES LIVE IN CARE WORK?
Just the simple act of helping someone out of bed and making them a morning cup of tea or coffee can make all the difference to the rest of a loved one’s day as can the security of another human presence living in their home to be “on hand” whenever required.
We provide the resources so that you can have a fully trained carer living with you under your roof. The carer will require their own room – a comfortable single room to call their own is plenty.
WHAT IS AN IN-HOME CARE PROVIDER?
The Live In Care Hub is a collaboration of high-quality care providers that enable people to be cared for within their own homes instead of having to “go into a home”.
Some loved ones are very happy within good quality residential care, but many are still unaware of the lesser known option of remaining at home and having their own personalised “live in” carer. The Live In Care Hub was created to raise awareness that this indeed is an option.
HOW MUCH DOES LIVE-IN CARE COST IN THE UK?
The cost is comparable to residential care, but it can make all the difference to the quality of life for a loved one to be able to remain in their home. This is because residential care home fees are mainly for accommodation and food and the actual care given in a 24-hour period, in comparison to live in care, can be significantly less.
The beauty of live in care is that our carers offer 100% care time; and live in fees are even more cost effective when required for a couple. The fees obviously depend on the level of care required and there are several tiers of support available from simple companionship care with minimal personal care right through to complex care that may include nurse-led services and dementia care.
It is important to remember that everyone’s needs are different and so all options should be considered when weighing up the benefits of residential versus live-in care.
HOW DO I FIND A LIVE-IN CARE-GIVER?
The Live In Care Hub is a not-for-profit, unbiased resource that can help match you to the right service provider and carer (or team of carers) for you, whether your needs are simple or complex. You can choose from:
This is where one of our providers hires and trains its own care staff with clients and their loved ones deciding what level of service is required. This can include 24/7 care which oversees some medical needs, and this can provide peace of mind for a busy family; knowing that their loved one is being fully taken care of.
This is where one of our introductory agencies offers a pool of highly qualified, self-employed agency staff for you to choose from. A typical scenario would be a maximum of 3 carers provided throughout the year; with the transition from one member of care staff to the next carried out carefully to ensure continuity of care.
DO YOU HAVE TO PAY FOR CARERS IN YOUR OWN HOME?
You may be entitled to supplementary funding from the government in the form of attendance allowance or personal independence payments which can help towards the cost of live in care. You may also be entitled to funding under the NHS Continuing Healthcare scheme; anyone is entitled to a free assessment to see whether they will get help towards the cost of care needs.
Usually families will have to pay for live in care; we recommend that you get in touch with Care Funding Guidance who are the only not-for-profit organisation within the UK that provides free help and information about funding elderly care. They aim to ensure your finances are in good shape and that your particular care costs are transparent from the outset.
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE COST FOR LIVE IN CARE?
Live in care can start from as little as £695 per week. Obviously, this will vary depending on the care provider/agency and the specific needs of the client. The area in which you live will also affect the cost with the South-East of England and particularly London being higher than the average cost. However, this average cost compares favourably with residential care but offers a complete one to one level of care. For couples needing care it can be more cost-effective than two care home places.
WHAT ARE HOMECARE SERVICES?
Home care services offer a person-centred alternative to residential care that enable a loved one to feel as though they are still a part of everyday life. With home care, a client can remain in their home in familiar surroundings and routines with as little or as much help as they need to go about their daily activities.
Home care services are usually delivered without the carer living in the client’s home.
HOW DO I ARRANGE HOME CARE OR LIVE-IN CARE?
There are several avenues open to you. If you wish to arrange home care or live-in care via your local council then you will need to get in touch with them and request a needs assessment which is free. If you meet the criteria you will be eligible for care provided via the local authority.
If you are not eligible for state funding you can arrange for a private carer through one of the live-in care agencies operating across the UK. You can find companies that operate in your area via a postcode search,
Irrespective of your financial situation; you can always contact a private care provider directly. The Live In Care Hub offer free, impartial advice for anyone considering live in care.
HOW CAN I BECOME A LIVE-IN CARER?
All members of the Live-in Care Hub pride themselves on the quality of their carers. Many train their staff to extremely high standards .
What experience do I need to be a live-in carer?
A willingness to care for and help others is the main ingredient. The 3 main qualities are:
➤ First aid experience
➤ Professional experience of caring for elderly or vulnerable people
➤ Personal experience.
Many people begin giving care from a young age for family members without even being really aware that they were “carers”.
Specialist training for special people
You would need to attend several rounds of interviews and pass all security checks. If successful; you would then need to be prepared to undertake specialist training to ensure you deliver the utmost in quality of care. All of the care providers that are members of the Live-in Care Hub are looking for special people to fulfil these important roles. You can find vacancies here
CAN PEOPLE WITH DEMENTIA OR ALZHEIMER’S BE CARED FOR AT HOME?
Yes. As long as it is safe to do so. It can be of immense benefit for the person living with dementia to remain in a familiar place. Many family and friends offer help and support to their loved ones with these conditions but if this is not possible or becoming a struggle; live in care can help ease the strain.
HOW LONG CAN SOMEONE WITH DEMENTIA OR ALZHEIMER’S LIVE AT HOME?
Many people; especially those more mildly affected, can be cared for safely at home for many years but as these conditions progress, there may come a time when their needs are no longer able to be met. This is because carers are not responsible for:
➤ Heavy moving and lifting
➤ Constant night care (2 or more carers manage 24 hour care and support shifts)
However, if clients have changing care needs than the care package can be adapted to include night time interventions. Nursing care can also be provided. These additional elements may mean that your loved one is able to live for as long as possible in their own home.
Live in care may not be the right option if the person displays very challenging behaviour. The safety of both the carer and client is paramount to ensure the best working relationship and care package is in place.
DO THOSE WITH DEMENTIA OR ALZHEIMER’S PAY FOR THEIR OWN CARE?
Not necessarily. The same assessment and funding process/options apply as they do for a limiting physical health condition.
If you are receiving support in your own home you are still entitled to keep a basic level of income.
You may need to pay for all of your care whether you are living in your own home or in residential care. This means you are a self-funder or you may make a contribution with the local authority and/or the NHS providing funding under the continuing care scheme.
CAN NURSING CARE BE PROVIDED AT HOME?
The simple answer is: yes for non-complex medical conditions. Nursing care differs from regular care at home because it is provided by qualified nurses. Many clinical care services can be provided alongside normal home care so that all care needs are safely provided in comfort without having to go to hospital.
Nurses can deal with the following in your own home:
➤ Tube feeding