The CQC’s ‘State of Care’ Report is published today, and paints a picture of a health and social service that is “at full stretch”. There is too much “fragmented care” and the statistics in the report about the unmet care needs and delayed discharge from hospital are staggering.
- 2 million people have unmet care needs
- 780,000 people experience delays in leaving hospital because social care packages cannot be compiled quickly enough
- Since April 2015 there are 4,000 fewer nursing home beds available, and yet the number of people aged 85+ is set to double in the next two decades in England alone
The report states that local collaboration and joined up care needs to be a priority. So how do legal services fit in?
Do you have a Power of Attorney in place?
If you lose capacity, who is able to make decisions on your behalf? There are two types of Power of Attorneys that you should consider:
a) Property and Finance
These allow your chosen attorney(s) to pay your bills – including those for care so if you have lost capacity, then you will know that someone else can help sort things out for you. If no-one can access the finances to pay for care, this can cause considerable delays, and if an application to the Court of Protection is needed this can end up becoming very expensive and is a lengthy process.
b) Health and Care
If you have lost capacity, then any decision about your health and care must be made in your best interests which may conflict with your own views. Appointing an attorney that you trust means that they can speak on your behalf.
If you do not want to appoint an attorney, but have clear views on your health treatment and care, then a ‘living will’ (Advance decision) may be appropriate. You can stipulate what care you would want to refuse – such as CPR, blood transfusions, or even antibiotics.
Anyone who finds themselves in need of care will find themselves in the middle of an array of health and social care services. The peace of mind that will be granted by knowing that early planning means that they will get the care they want can make an enormous difference. Here at Gregg Latchams, we can help prepare for, and navigate the care system, with your wishes and interests at the centre. Get in touch to see how we can help.