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Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 11226
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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I am the owner of a care centre in Sunderland, 113 beds. I

Customer Question

I am the owner of a care centre in Sunderland, 113 beds. I am a nurse by original trade.
My close friend Sheila is also a former nurse, we worked abroad together, she now has alzheimer's disease, she is bedfast, cannot speak or stand, in the later stages of her illness. She was first placed in a care home in Lancashire by her son Philip who I know and is around my age. Philip asked if I would look after Sheila at my care centre, I agreed and she moved from Lancashire to Sunderland over 2 years ago. She is well taken care of and I see her often.
Philip pays me private fees less than the going rate at my care centre at £500 a week. I pay for her clothes, toiletries, eye glasses and whatever else she needs, I seek no reimbursement.
When Sheila came, Philip told me he had power of attorney to deal with her affairs and that he was placing her in my care. He does not visit, he rarely answers my updates about his mother, I think because he cannot deal with her disease.
Today we have had an inspection from the CCG and when they came they asked to see Sheilas file and financial arrangements we had regarding her.
I believe CCG inspectors job is to assess/inspect nursing category patients, Sheila is not in this category she is assessed as residential care.
I have no formal agreement from Philip other than a letter from him personally to state he wanted me to look after his mother.
Question is: have the CCG inspectors got the right to ask for her care plan and financial records as she is not a nursing patient?
The reason I am asking is because I do not have a formal arrangement for looking after her, I have not recorded any purchases/expenses by me as I just buy when she needs something and the fee of £500 a week is paid by Philip her son directly into my company account in line with other fees from clients.
Also, in this case do I have a formal contract with Sheilas son?
All other patients and residential service users have a signed contract with us whether they are private paying of not, but I am not sure if care homes have been bullied into this by the council or CQC.
Can you offer advice please?
I dont understand why the CCG came to do the inspections today already supplied with her name? CCG asking for financial records would highlight that we have only the £500 fee and nothing else, her son does not send anything for her, I don't care about this, I am concerned about not having the right authority to take care of her, he is not contactable most of the time, I tried again today but doesn't reply, I asked him for a copy of the POA that he says he has and that we are supposed to hold on file.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Buachaill replied 1 year ago.

1. Dear ***** Ann, the first thing you need to realise is that a contract can be oral or in writing. Here, you have an oral agreement evidenced in writing by the instructions given by Philip, Sheila's son and by the payments of the monies into your company account. So, the first thing to be aware of, is that there is a care agreement in place, with the holder of the Power of Attorney in relation to Sheila - Philip her son.

Expert:  Buachaill replied 1 year ago.

2. If, for some reason, Philip does not have a Power of ATtorney in relation to Sheila, this does not affect your position as you are merely fulfilling his instructions to care for her. Be aware that a POA in relation to someone with Alzheimer's would have to be registered with the Court of Protection in order that it give the holder the power to access Sheila's money now she no longer has legal capacity.

Expert:  Buachaill replied 1 year ago.

3. Be aware that under the Health & Social Care Act 2012, the Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG) would have responsibility to ensure Sheila received the proper level of care. The CCG'S have responsibility to ensure joined up care for Sheila given her incapacity.

Expert:  Buachaill replied 1 year ago.

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