Kirkland is a carer for his aunt – Paulette. Kirkland contacted POhWER for advocacy support with contacting Adult Social Care (ASC) about the number of hours of support Paulette receives from carers. Paulette has learning disabilities, experiences seizures and has a number of other ongoing health conditions. Paulette needs support with personal care, reminding to take medication, preparing meals and eating. If left alone for any length of time she is at risk of falls and has been known to eat foods raw that should be cooked which make her ill.

Raminder, a POhWER advocate, spoke to Kirkland over the phone and he explained that Paulette had five different social workers over the last 6 months and he was finding it hard to get a clear answer from anyone about the process for Paulette’s care being increased. Kirkland felt her support hours were not adequate during the night as he feels someone should be with her for the duration rather than just a few hours in case she has a seizure or needs support to use the bathroom. Social services suggested that Paulette could have a seizure monitor fitted but Kirkland said he would rather someone was with her. Paulette used to go to a day centre 3 days a week but that stopped due to Covid and so she also spends more time alone during the day. Kirkland is concerned about this and the lack of stimulation for his aunt. Kirkland brought Paulette a mini greenhouse and she has been growing vegetables which helps her pass some of the time. Kirkland and his wife and young children live nearby to Paulette and provide what care they can but both he and his wife work full time.

Kirkland asked Raminder to speak to Paulette’s new social worker and get updates on what was happening to progress their request for more care hours.

Raminder contacted the social worker. The social worker told her that a care review was being arranged for Paulette.

Raminder informed Kirkland about this and explained what would happen as part of the care review. Kirkland asked Raminder to attend the care review with him to support him to put his views and Paulette’s needs and wishes across. Paulette did not want to go into a supported living facility and Kirkland wanted to make sure that his aunt’s wishes were taken into account but that she also received the care she needed. Raminder did this and Kirkland was satisfied that he had been heard.

The CCG who would potentially be funding Paulette’s care requested a Health Needs Assessment and evidence of Paulette’s health needs from her GP and other professionals.

Costing's for Paulette’s care package had to go to senior management for approval as it was a large package and would be costly.

The CCG said that they would fund extra hours of support for Paulette during the day but would not fund the night care. Kirkland was shocked and frustrated by this and felt that the night support was very much needed to keep his aunt safe and retain her dignity and respect around her personal care. Raminder informed Kirkland of his options, including appealing the decision.

Kirkland decided to appeal the decision. Raminder told him about the process for doing this and Kirkland lodged an appeal. Following this, a reassessment was arranged. Kirkland requested that Raminder attend this with him.

Finally the increase in Paulette’s support hours over night was approved and put in place. Backdated payments were also agreed.