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Attendance Allowance for mum - how can you get it??


della2
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Hello, Up until now I have helped mum (67) with most of her paperwork. Dad is too ill to do much anymore and I do have a question about him which I will post later.

 

Back to the point. I helped mum fill in two Attendance Allowance claim forms. They took ages. I did the first one in Jan 2011. It was refused because the GP basically said that there is nothing wrong with her that she needs care. Not true at all, but I understand why, she never tells the GP anything other than the least amount possible to satisfy me when I make her go.

Well it went to a Court hearing in April this year and they refused it as well because they just didn't believe her and said so in their letter.

 

Anyhow after that letter (May 2012) came I told mum that she must go to the GP and tell them all about how she really feels and what her life is like at home. I took her to make sure she went. I also took a letter that I did for her listing down like a diary of what a normal day is like at home for her and gave it to her to hand to the GP.

 

Well the GP listened and sent her for a consultation with a Consultant Physio. Then she has been seeing a physio for her athritis

 

On top of that she is now on medication for depression.

 

Well I put in a new claim in for her in June and once again it has been refused guess why? The GP put the same exact report in saying that there is nothing wrong with her!!!

I feel that I am wasting my time here the GP clearly doesn't believe her.

 

I just can't see how I can get someone, anyone to take notice and see for themselves just how bad she is.

 

I have told mum that there is no point in appealing as clearly if the GP isn't supporting her she has no chance in another court hearing.

 

What should I do, where should I go? The DWP have already had all of the evidence I could send in, physio letters, consultant letters, prescription and even a letter from me telling them just what is happening at home.

 

It annoys me to know that she does have genuine problems - walking, dressing, toiletries and general day to day help but no one believes her or me.

 

If I didn't go in every day and with dad not being able to get about and him too having serious medical issues and look after himself, I would imagine that they would just live in squalor and not eat or wash.

 

Where do I go please - do I just fill in another form and hope for the best?

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I would see about changing GP. If he is that unhelpful he is not doing any good.

Good luck.

 

Thanks for that.

 

Yes I have already thought about that. Trouble is they have had the same GP since 1999 and of course there is history.

I am a little worried about suggesting it to them as any new doctor would know nothing about them.

So much like jumping from the frying pan into the fire!

 

It really gets me angry after I spent ages getting mum there and after writing down hour by hour what she is like and how she lives over an average 24 hour period, the GP just dismisses it as not relevant and untrue.

 

I'm lost now on where to turn and who to turn to for help.

 

I suppose my only option that I have come up with is to try to bypass the GP and see if I can get Social Services involved somehow. But I can't see that really happening with all of the cuts.

Mind you they will have to get involved sometime in the future as I will not be able to carry on coping as I am with both mum and dad to look after as well as my own family.

 

But I do thank you for your suggestion and your thoughts.

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Thanks for that.

 

Yes I have already thought about that. Trouble is they have had the same GP since 1999 and of course there is history.

I am a little worried about suggesting it to them as any new doctor would know nothing about them.

So much like jumping from the frying pan into the fire!

 

It really gets me angry after I spent ages getting mum there and after writing down hour by hour what she is like and how she lives over an average 24 hour period, the GP just dismisses it as not relevant and untrue.

 

I'm lost now on where to turn and who to turn to for help.

 

I suppose my only option that I have come up with is to try to bypass the GP and see if I can get Social Services involved somehow. But I can't see that really happening with all of the cuts.

Mind you they will have to get involved sometime in the future as I will not be able to carry on coping as I am with both mum and dad to look after as well as my own family.

 

But I do thank you for your suggestion and your thoughts.

 

If she's seeing a physio, then they would have a better idea of her needs than the GP - speak to the physio to see if they would agree to provide information about her condition and needs. remember that in order to get AA for daytime needs you need to prove that she needs frequent help throughout the day, so you need to show 5 to preferably 10 seperate occasions throughout the day that she needs help with personal care.

We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office ~ Aesop

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You can self refer to social services. You don't need the input of a GP or other medical professional.

 

Yes and OT assessments are particularly useful for AA.

We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office ~ Aesop

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If she's seeing a physio, then they would have a better idea of her needs than the GP - speak to the physio to see if they would agree to provide information about her condition and needs. remember that in order to get AA for daytime needs you need to prove that she needs frequent help throughout the day, so you need to show 5 to preferably 10 seperate occasions throughout the day that she needs help with personal care.

 

Thank you.

 

After mum saw this 'consultant' (who isn't a consultant), she was offered an appointment at the physio clinic at the local hospital. On her first visit she had acupuncture which hurt her, and the following week or so she was in pain in her back and legs and one morning I had to rush round as she couldn't get out of bed at all. Dad is useless because of his problems so he couldn't help. She had wet herself as she couldn't get to the toilet.

She then went to the physio clinic 2 weeks later and after me telling them what had happened and how much worse she had been all they said was that it was to be expected! What being sick, dizzy etc? Yes!!

 

Anyhow at this 2nd appointment which was 2 weeks ago, they had her do some exercises. This too caused her more discomfort and she was crying when she came out.

This morning she went for her 3rd appointment of 6, and I must admit I lost it with them. They backtracked on what they said was wrong with her, and once again made out that she was 'just stiff'! Mum always tries to be active. All of this goes back 30 years but mum never asked for help until recently - and this is what she gets. Anyhow they have now discharged her because she is not willing to be treated as a guinea pig anymore.

So I doubt very much that the physio department would be prepared to help by giving a report as they are now admitting that they 'don't actually know what is wrong with her' and maybe the best thing is to 'go back to the GP to see what he can come up with' - as if - she won't go as there is no point to it.

 

I know what she has to have to qualify for AA, all of which is well covered and is true. It is a constant thing every day, lift her up set her down, walk her, dress/undress - buttons, zips, shoes. 15 minutes doesn't go by without her needing some help with her care needs. All of this was put in the letter that she gave the GP that I did for her.

 

The GP without saying anything is of the opinion that either mum is 'playing' on her problems or that we are all involved in some sort of conspiracy.

 

You have used the word prove. That is the problem, there is no one that can prove any of what I say or she says that she has problems with. Yes she can prove that there is something wrong, but getting the proof of seeing how it affects her is just not there.

 

It's like saying that yes she has arthritis in almost every joint, that can be proved, but no one will stick their neck out to say that yes she has these difficulties on a daily basis.

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Does your mums gps surgery have a carer champion. At mine the main receptionist is ours. I had to officially be put down on husbands notes that I was his main carer, the the receptionist sat down with me and asked what life was like, what I had to do, how I was coping. She got me a referral to Occupational Therapy. Also she got a man to come down from the Local Carers Association who helped work out what benefits we were entitled too.

I think is it was not for her I would have completely cracked.

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You can self refer to social services. You don't need the input of a GP or other medical professional.

 

Oh, I didn't know that.

 

Mum is already having a 'Carers Assessment' on the 28th of this month which is being carried out by the local mental health department which dad is under. That department is worried that mum isn't coping very well with looking after dad at home. I know she isn't! I do most of his caring as well to help mum out, but when I am not around, mum has to do it. She has to work with him 24/7 and it's now getting to the point that she can't due to her own limitations.

That assessment is for the mental health team to work with and is not an assessment for mum's own problems.

 

I will ring Social Services and see what they say about assessing mum. I doubt much will happen as it will be another cost to them out of an already depleted budget.

In our county Adult Social Care has been hit the hardest with the cuts.

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Does your mums gps surgery have a carer champion. At mine the main receptionist is ours. I had to officially be put down on husbands notes that I was his main carer, the the receptionist sat down with me and asked what life was like, what I had to do, how I was coping. She got me a referral to Occupational Therapy. Also she got a man to come down from the Local Carers Association who helped work out what benefits we were entitled too.

I think is it was not for her I would have completely cracked.

 

Thank you

What a caring surgery you have. No there is no such thing at mum's GP surgery.

What I haven't said is that I have lost count of the number of times when I have been to see the GP - we all have the same GP - and told him that he must look at mum and get to the bottom of the matter only to be told that it had nothing to do with me and that he would only act if mum herself asked. That's when I decided to get mum there one way or another and did the letter for her which explained everything.

 

Is Occupational Therapy the same as physio?

 

Oh I so wish that I had that level of help and understanding. I have a feeling that the GP thinks that all of this is contrived to get mum AA which in part it is, because without asking or getting help it iwould be impossible to achieve. However I know that the most important factor is getting help and understanding for mum even without the AA as at the moment they (mum & dad) are just being left to fester away with no one being there for them other than me.

 

I haven't even started asking questions about my dad, he too is in the same boat, although the GP has to accept that he is very ill, not just with mental illness only because too many outside agencies/consultants/hospitals are involved in his care. But even despite that, the GP did the same back in 2011 when reporting to the DWP about a claim I made for him for DLA. The GP wrote that 'whilst there are many psychological and physical problems, none would cause him to have care or mobility problems'. His claim was refused. It was only after I sent them a whole batch of reports that they sat up and offered him the high rates of care and mobilty indefinitely.

 

It is so difficult when there is no one to turn to.

 

I think I will ring the Carers Association as I am getting to the end of my tether with all of what is going on.

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I see, thanks. I presume that that will be the same as a Social Services assessment then as if it has to come from the GP, I'll be waiting another 20 years!

 

An Ot assessment, although it does have the end aim of providing equipment that can help, is a comprehensive assessment of her abilities and needs and very useful for AA claims. It isn't necessarily the same as a 'social services assessment' as this can be any one of a number of different assessments - though one is to assess care needs which would also be a good assessment to have.

 

You can self refer to social services, there should be a helpline you can google for your county.

We hang the petty thieves and appoint the great ones to public office ~ Aesop

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An Ot assessment, although it does have the end aim of providing equipment that can help, is a comprehensive assessment of her abilities and needs and very useful for AA claims. It isn't necessarily the same as a 'social services assessment' as this can be any one of a number of different assessments - though one is to assess care needs which would also be a good assessment to have.

 

You can self refer to social services, there should be a helpline you can google for your county.

 

Many thanks.

 

I have just put the phone down from Social Services and they have told me to self refer mum and dad using their online assessment forms.

As soon as they get them they will appoint a 'Care Manager??' to come out to assess them both. They did say that everything is 'in house' including OT's.

 

They were a little concerned that dad's psychologist had asked for a 'carers assessment ' to be carried by the CMHT out for mum but had not involved Social Services as well.

 

Job for the weekend self refer mum and dad!!!

 

The way things seem to be going - who needs a GP when you can do their work for them?

 

Thanks one and all for the advice

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I've been reading up on benefits in general that affect the older person after having a long discussion with a Welfare Rights worker from AgeUK.

 

Having delved into mum & dad's financial affairs because of what is currently happening with mum's AA claim, I have found some startling information.

 

It's no wonder that the DWP are now resisting Attendance Allowance claims - they are costing the Treasury a great deal of money.

 

It seems that if a couple (both over 65) each claim and are awarded the very lowest rate for Attendance Allowance (day time care, spead over the day and amounting to at least 1 hour in total), the minimum amount that the government say that they will need to live on, including the Attendance Allowance monies, is £503.20 a week.

 

Without the Attendance Allowance claims, the minimum amount that the government say that they will need to live on is £217.90 a week.

 

Obviously that is the reason why older people are now finding it almost impossible to be awarded Attendance Allowance, when previously there was nearly a 90% award rate a few years ago. For this couple I have quoted, their weekly income would go up by an astounding £285.30 a week

 

I knew that there had to be a reason behind what was going on and now I have found it. It has nothing to do with proving needs or using suitable aids/adaptions it is all about money!!!!!

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My mum failed her AA. So I forced her to appeal and she was awarded the high rate, and had it backdated.

 

What has happened with mum is this: me, mum, dad, granma, great aunt and uncle all used to live together, this is how I grew up. Aunt Lil started off first, being the oldest and mum wouldn;t let her go into a home, so spent several years humping her about and doing everything for her. The gran started going downhill (a large lady), same again for mum. Next it was Uncle Stan, got cancer, died a slow death, but at home, because again, mum didn;t want anyone else to care for him. No sooner had he popped his clogs, then here we go again, dad this time. Twenty years of intensive care she gave to dad at home, until we lost him last year.

 

Once mum started picking up from the grief, and wanting to go out and about again, she found that all her aches and pains, that she had been distracted from by other peoples wants and needs over the years, they hit her full force. She needs a hip replacement to start with. She is also quite depressed.

 

I had the devil of a job to get her to the GP, but I did this, and her GP specialises in geriatric care. When mum got the letter to say she would not be awarded AA, this doctor went hell for leather for the DWP. The result being the higher rate, and backdated to the date she applied, until 2014.

 

Does your practice have different GP's or just the one? If it's more than one you could ask what they specialise in and book an appt with the one that looks after elderly care. Then you'll have the problem of getting mother to a different doctor I expect, but I'm sure you can deal with that!

 

I think mum gets an extra £77? a week now?

 

Don't give in, my mum worked most of her life, in addition to all this caring, never asked for a penny in carer's allowance - I say she is entitled to it. So is your mum.

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My mum failed her AA. So I forced her to appeal and she was awarded the high rate, and had it backdated.

 

What has happened with mum is this: me, mum, dad, granma, great aunt and uncle all used to live together, this is how I grew up. Aunt Lil started off first, being the oldest and mum wouldn;t let her go into a home, so spent several years humping her about and doing everything for her. The gran started going downhill (a large lady), same again for mum. Next it was Uncle Stan, got cancer, died a slow death, but at home, because again, mum didn;t want anyone else to care for him. No sooner had he popped his clogs, then here we go again, dad this time. Twenty years of intensive care she gave to dad at home, until we lost him last year.

 

Once mum started picking up from the grief, and wanting to go out and about again, she found that all her aches and pains, that she had been distracted from by other peoples wants and needs over the years, they hit her full force. She needs a hip replacement to start with. She is also quite depressed.

 

I had the devil of a job to get her to the GP, but I did this, and her GP specialises in geriatric care. When mum got the letter to say she would not be awarded AA, this doctor went hell for leather for the DWP. The result being the higher rate, and backdated to the date she applied, until 2014.

 

Does your practice have different GP's or just the one? If it's more than one you could ask what they specialise in and book an appt with the one that looks after elderly care. Then you'll have the problem of getting mother to a different doctor I expect, but I'm sure you can deal with that!

 

I think mum gets an extra £77? a week now?

 

Don't give in, my mum worked most of her life, in addition to all this caring, never asked for a penny in carer's allowance - I say she is entitled to it. So is your mum.

 

Thanks

 

No wonder your mum is 'worn out'.

 

Your suggestion regarding seeing a different GP in the same practice is an excellent one. Unfortunately, my mum and dad can't have that support. For a start there is no one that specialises in Geriatric cases and secondly, mum and dad have had a letter from their GP telling them to find a new practice! I have made an official complaint to the GMC/PCT about all of this and have written an article for Sandra Parsons from the 'Daily Mail' who has also been in contact with the GP but failed to obtain a statement.

 

I have told the current GP that they are required to treat both mum and dad until they decide if they want to move elsewhere.

They don't, so in the meantime, they are using the 'Walk in Centre', A&E and have access to advice from a 'telephone GP' 24/7 courtesy of Benenden Healthcare and receiving their repeat prescription from the GP - they don't need to apply to see anyone.

 

So at the moment they are technically without GP input, albeit that I have put a gun to the GP's head!!

 

In addition, on the 28th mum has to have an assessment as dad's carer - by a social worker from the local CMHT, and that a 'care manager' was appointed for both of them by Social Services this afternoon following a 'case hearing' by the local council.

 

Where all of this will end I do not know - all I ever wanted was for mum and dad to have a quiet time together now as they are both fantastic parents and grandparents.

They both deserve a bit of time for just them without all of this going on around them, and not forgetting dad's ESA renewals every 6 months which always end up at a Tribunal hearing. There are always two appeals going on at the same time due to the delays at the Tribunal Service.

 

I haven't even started on dad's problems and his needs!! Given the lack of help from the GP I can't see any point in making any additional claims for him.

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Oh thats awful. What a horrible GP. Is that the only practice in their vicinity? Actually, when I said geriatric, probably what I meant was senior care! Sounds much better.

From what you've told us it sounds like someone somewhere is going to get a boot up the bottom, and i expect one of our experts will come along later and tell you precisely where to kick.

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Oh thats awful. What a horrible GP. Is that the only practice in their vicinity? Actually, when I said geriatric, probably what I meant was senior care! Sounds much better.

From what you've told us it sounds like someone somewhere is going to get a boot up the bottom, and i expect one of our experts will come along later and tell you precisely where to kick.

 

Thanks

Yes that is exactly what I think and the more trouble and aggravation I cause the GP the better.

 

geriatric LOL yes senior it is then!

 

The nearest practice that is currently taking new patients is out of the village. According to the NHS website, it is 9.2 miles away - as per the crow that is!

Two bus journeys and a 15 minute walk at normal speed - at mum and dad's speed more like an hour.

 

There really isn't much that can be done. The only thing that the GMC/PCT can do is if they are found to have acted improperly. Very difficult to prove when neither mum nor dad would go and see the GP, and if they did, it was in, out, as fast as their legs would carry them. As for them asking for help there will be no record of that either. It's only since I became involved when I found out what had been happening, that the GP would have information about.

 

Their argument will be that they can only treat patients if the patient asks for help. I look at it slightly different - GP's should be proactive when elderly people come to see them. He should question them, not rely on them asking.

 

Apart from what I have done so far, there is little left to do except wait now to see what Social Services come up with - probably nothing given the cuts in expenditure on older people, and the carers assessment which could well see dad being taken into hospital or a care home as mum finds it so hard now what with her many ailments.

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What good is that going to do?

 

No good at all probably, but it does feel good!!

 

You could ask what harm will it do? The answer is still the same - none at all, the GP practice has already contacted mum and dad requiring them both to find another GP elsewhere. And the GMC/PCT are doing their bit their way and don't need us.

 

Call it a bit of sweet revenge for how my parents have been treated. I am hoping that Sandra Parsons from the 'Mail' will do a follow up on her bit in today's paper.

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