Spoke to The Care Agency providing support with Jermaine yesterday in a rather long meeting here.
On Monday there was a meeting here between myself, the care manager J Heep and the equivalent from Health L Bullen. We discussed loads but primarily it was to talk about the carers assessments that they had never looked at which Matt and I produced back in July. One of the interesting little details to come out of that was when both of the assessments stated that we were really concerned that nothing was in place for emergencies, a prophecy we had hoped would never come true but did on Black Friday.
Part of those assessments included a care package we needed in the home to help us with Jermaine. It included a couple of hours each morning (vital to prevent another Black Friday) and some time in the evenings and weekends with a lot more during holiday periods. Well, the agency was told 3:45 – 7:00pm only. I have given them the details of the other times we mentioned and they said they can do them no problem but, of course, needed to speak to Social Services.
I have tried contacting SS this morning. J Heep is not in this part of the week so trying J Adams who should have been back at 10:30 but still no reply on her phone, just voicemail and no one else there has any idea what I am on about. This is worrying seeing as I need to know what is happening Monday and, presumably, if I can’t contact her then neither can the agency so very little could be happening Monday. The times chosen also show how very little they listen. Had they done so they would know that the mornings are far more important than the evenings seeing as, if he doesn’t get to school then I am in the poo. Yet again, failing to make any attempt to prevent what happened on Black Friday.
I have also found out about another care home in Buckingham Called Queen Elizabeth House which, shock of shocks, also offers respite prior to full time admission if required! Why I can find these things yet J Heep can’t is beyond me.
What I think we need to do is add an addendum to the complaint regarding social services and then make additional complains about that part of health that Lucy Bullen works for and also those responsible for the POVA and, in particular, H Smart who made that phone call to Daisy. For the record, the one in which she said what a bad parent I was and how she was going to report me to social services and the police, Daisy is 12.
Crikey, it appears that J Adams is providing a fair amount of cow excrement all round this morning!
She said to me that she has agreed the package as follows:
13:00-19:00 Sat – Sun and school holidays and 15:45 – 19:00 weekdays with an extension to 11pm on Thursday and Friday. She said that ‘The agency’ refused to do the morning and ‘she thinks’ J Heep is looking into sorting out something for the mornings for the week after half term. (Looking into something’ is the most common phrase I hear from social services) I pointed out that the word ‘consistency’ has been mentioned on numerous occasions and using two agencies goes against that ethos. She claimed again, she has not choice as ‘The agency’ won’t do it. I asked if, as they mentioned to me, it was a case of ‘The agency’ possibly demanding at least 4 hours payment as a minimum and she said that there was no way they would approve funding unless the agency was actually working. I suggested that perhaps, in that case, the agency could stay the remaining 2.5 hours and do some housework clearing up after Jermaine, doing the washing, ironing etc. She agreed at first and then said that this was all about the care that Jermaine needed. I pushed her on it and she then said that it was going to be extremely difficult to find another agency to do those hours as they are their busiest times. I mentioned that the mornings were probably the most vital times to fulfil and she kind of did a verbal shrug. I suggested that surely best care for Jermaine is that he be offered consistent care and the care package that was required for him and that they also had a duty to provide us best care so if it meant paying a little more then they should do so, she said they’d never agree funding. In other words, sod best care, save money. I also pointed out that Full Time Residential was going to cost them a minimum of £1300 a week, how much were they saving by this package in the home and did an extra payment for 2.5 hours unused put it over £1300 a week and she kind of gave me the ‘don’t be ridiculous’ grunt.
Later I spoke to George who runs ‘The agency’ and he said (*cover ears*) “What a load of bloody crap!” He said he told her that the morning may be difficult to do because they needed to find the right carers but not impossible and it had nothing to do with money or how much they needed, that was all sorted he said and the money would be pro-rata so all this 4 hours stuff was not a factor, in other words, J Adams was not listening. She also lied to ‘The agency’ by telling them she had no idea what was on Jermaine’s file even though I already knew she had the file in front of her when they called her.
It just seems to me that SS are not learning anything, they are still out to save money with their admitted ‘most difficult client’ and ignoring the needs of the case. Sadly, working the complain route is not going to get anything moving quick enough.
I also asked her why I am finding care homes and J Heep is not and she told me how J Heep is a very highly trained worker but also has many other clients and can’t devote her time to just Jermaine. I suggested that as Jermaine is their ‘most difficult client’ that maybe a full time care manager with equal or superior knowledge would be better suited to it and she said that they ‘maybe’ already have full case loads. In other words, sure, he needs the best we have but they are busy with less serious cases so let’s leave him in the hands of a part timer!
My concern here is not just that Jermaine and us are being screwed but that they will do it all over again the next time a Jermaine comes along. Nothing I have heard or read suggests any change of attitude, what do you think?
Anyway, just spoken to J Adams again and she has approved the level as above, I have asked for additional funding allocation for possibly one overnight care per week to be arranged as required with ‘The agency’ (they are open to the idea) and she said that she has provisionally approved the funding package but will take it to panel Tuesday and they could reject it in which case, all we think we have arranged gets thrown out again.
You know, I really did have other plans than to spend the bulk of today on this, I was really kind of hoping to do other stuff!