A large percentage of my work lately has come from couples who are planning for their future and checking out their options for suitable aged care accommodation. However, my most recent couple are a good example of what happens when a crisis occurs. It puts the family under enormous stress as they need an immediate solution and they want it to be the right solution.
This couple were going along quite well in their own home. The wife is in the early stages of dementia and her husband has been her main carer. He could maintain the house, drive and generally keep things in order. That was until he had a serious fall resulting in a head injury which left him unable to walk and, for a few weeks, it was touch and go. During this time the wife was put into respite care in a facility that was able to offer an indefinite period. Then the family were informed that it was unlikely their Dad would ever be able to walk again and they needed to find him a place in residential care.
When I was asked to assist, as a Placement Specialist, my brief was to find a n aged care facility that was affordable, where they could be accommodated together as a couple and where both could go in at roughly the same time. Not an easy ask in Bayside Melbourne! Luck was on our side and I secured a place for them – a couple’s suite at a negotiated price in a lovely facility. We did have to admit the husband to a single room on his own for a week and leave his wife in respite until the suite was refurbished, but it all worked out well. It never ceases to amaze me how often it happens that I am able to get a really good outcome due to the timing of a vacancy occurring right when we need it. In saying this, I much prefer to find placements for my clients when it is not a crisis situation.