I’m a new member, but experienced carer.
I have looked after my wife for 28+ years. She receives PIP std care/enhanced mobility. I recieve ESA (support group) including carers premium. I have two adult sons at home, one with ASD/Aspergers recieving ESA(SG). The other has social anxiety syndrome and has had no income for three years as he dare not apply for benefits as he would have to talk to someone. Our GP will not give him a sicknote (so that I can apply for ESA on his behalf) unless he goes into the surgery, which he cannot do, even when he has been ill. The local mental health Trust (Humber) has offered help IF he asks for it. I can refer him myself, but only if I claim that I consider him a risk to himself or others, which I cannot do. He isn’t a risk and if I did it it would seriously damage our relationship, so the health service is being of no help to us.
I am of poor health myself for the past 30 years, admitted to hospital 8 times in the past 2 years. Last year I had 2 operations, and have had one operation already postponed this year. I am on the “extremely vulnerable” list twice (immunosuppressants for over 9 years and short bowel syndrome/malnutrition) and have been told to shield at home for 12 weeks, which a politician I know has told me is likely to be extended ad infinitum, at least until a vaccine is widely available. I am recieving priority shopping delivery slots and get a basic food package delivered each week. Unfortunately, because of my short bowel and Ileostomy bag I can’t eat most of the food without risking my health and would likely require hospital admission. I have emailed my local authority (Hull) but have since received 2 further parcels that are largely unsuitable. Fortunately, the secretary to my local MP has offered to look into this for me.
My biggest problem is I can’t go out to care for my wife when she is shopping, taking our dog for a walk, going for medicine and medical appointments or shopping/cleaning for older members of the disabled archery club we run. She is too “independently spirited” (I’m being diplomatic here) to ask for volunteers to do this for us, so she is still going out by herself now, which has resulted in her recieving some minor injuries as she has frequent seizures, but there’s no way I can stop her.
So that’s me and my family, and where we’re at with the Covid-19 pandemic. Stay safe people, and if anyone needs a sympathetic ear for your problems that’s one thing I can still do from enforced isolation.