Why we recommend Elder
Elder provides an excellent alternative to care homes by helping families to discover live-in care solutions for their loved ones. This means your loved one gets to stay in their own home surrounded by their own things, continue to see their friends and family, and maintain the hobbies and interests that make them who they are. All while getting the care they need, from a carer matched on needs and personality.
How it works
Elder chooses their carers carefully, with a rigorous selection process designed to filter out those who don't have the right characteristics and experience to be an excellent carer. Not only will your loved one be looked after by someone with years of experience to their name, but Elder will also whittle down their list of carers to find a kindred spirit they’ll really hit it off with. Once chosen, that dedicated care professional moves in to help with everything from personal care to household tasks - doing everything to ensure your loved one is safe, comfortable and happy in their own home. Elder’s live-in-care packages start from a fixed rate of £895 per week, which is comparable, if not less expensive than a lot of care homes. This includes weekends and holidays at no extra cost.
Alma is 86 years old and lives with her carer Anna, aged 28, in Swansea. Alma has lived with Parkinson’s for a number of years. Alma’s husband had been her sole carer, but after his death, their granddaughter, who was living abroad, became worried about being so far away from Alma. Alma was adamant that she wanted to stay at home, but needed support to do so. Alma has now had live-in care for 10 months. Here, her granddaughter Charlene shares their Elder experience.
What were your biggest fears or concerns about your grandmother growing older?
Being so far away, we worried about a lot of things; that she would hurt herself by getting up when there was no-one around to help her. That she might be scared and lonely. That we might not be able to afford for her to have the care she needed. Mostly, we worried because we live in a different country to my Grandma and wouldn’t be there to help if she needed us.
What were your top priorities when considering care options for your grandmother?
We needed to find someone to care for Grandma in a way that we could afford financially. We knew that we wanted a carer that would look after her at night as well as in the day. So we needed a live-in carer that wasn’t too expensive, as we wanted to be able to keep them on a long-term basis. The carer had to be trustworthy and reliable.
Were you aware of live-in care, or did you discover it through research?
Only after doing some research online and asking around. We had talked about Grandma needing support at some point in the future, but we hadn’t really looked into it until it became urgent.
What made you decide that live-in care was the best option?
My Grandma still wanted to live in her own home, and 24-hour care was the only way to make this happen. We looked at hourly care but we felt it wasn’t enough; physically she needs a lot of help.
Before research did you think live-in care would be more expensive, less expensive or about same?
Some companies we found were around £1,400 a week, which was much higher than I expected. Elder seemed the best value for money from the ones we looked at. They are half the price of some other agencies in the Swansea area. We also liked that they pay above average to their carers, which was important to us. We didn’t want someone that wasn’t happy with their job looking after her.
Do you think your grandmother is happier now?
Yes, I think that she’s very happy. She loves being home in her house. She was worried that she would have to leave it when she got to a certain point. I think she worries less about this now. She is content and happy with the arrangement.
Do you think that she gets enough attention and mental stimulation?
Yes, she gets one-on-one care, so she’s always got someone there when she wants to chat or talk about something on TV. They go out on day trips to the seaside sometimes, and country parks or to the gardening centre, which she loves. They play cards and have my Grandmother’s friends for meals and drinks.
Do you think she gets enough physical exercise?
Yes, her carer has taken her out as much as my Grandmother is willing to go. Sometimes they will go out 2-3 times a week. When the weather is cooler they stay at home more. The carer has researched various foot exercises so my Grandma can exercise her feet even when she isn’t well enough to walk. She liaises with the occupational therapist on foot massage technique, etc.
Do you feel like the carer has a good relationship with your grandmother?
Yes, very much so. I have no doubt my Grandma is in safe hands and Anna has become a good friend to her.
Do you feel reassured that you know what’s going on still and are still in control? Do you have enough access to information?
Yes, my Grandmother and carer keep in regular contact. I am still the main point of contact for social workers and doctors in connection to my grandmother. The carer keeps me updated and sends me photos if they have been anywhere nice.
Do you think that Elder offers better care for the elderly than existing/traditional models?
Yes, they have certainly filled a gap in the market. Traditionally people are forced to go into care homes if they need a certain level of support for cost & safety reasons. Elder offers a cost-effective solution that enables the elderly to live in the comfort of their own home.
Some of the live-in care agencies I looked at required lengthy interviews and a long time span before they could place a carer with her. Elder offered to send a qualified carer out the next day! This really is great as most people can’t wait a month for a carer, their needs are immediate!
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