Respite care costs relating to dementia

Once again I’m after some guidance please, and this is over respite care and costs.

BACKGROUND: Mum lives at home with her husband, is in her mid 80s and has dementia. A little over a year ago she spent four weeks in respite care (so her dementia could be assessed). She was deemed to no longer have mental capacity, and returned home with a package of care in place. Her local authority paid for two weeks of respite care and we paid for the other two weeks.

CURRENT ISSUE: Mum’s local authority now want to place her back into respite care for further assessment. They’ve said this would be for two weeks. While she has become more confused and agitated over the past year, essentially not a lot has changed. Firstly, can social services force this period of respite care (I assume ‘yes’ as I don’t hold any lasting power of attorney or court of protection order)? And secondly, even though adult social services are the ones wanting this new period of respite care, are they right to say we have to pay for it (mum and dad self-fund their care)? I can’t get a straight answer over why they were prepared to pay for two weeks of respite care a year ago, but they’re not prepared to do so now.

Any advice and thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.

Hi Michael.

For a definitive answer , I would bounce said questions off AGE UK … the acknowledged experts in this field :

Also include the previous stay … 2 weeks free / 2 weeks at cost … be interested to learn how the LA can justify that if they ,
themselves , instigated it.

( Part of a Needs assessment ? I’ll leave that to AGE UK. )

I assume CHC / NHS Continuing Healthcare is not part of the equation … yet ?

this sounds a bit suss to me.

I haven’t heard of this happening before via the forum.

I do know of younger people with a learning disability/autism and mental health problems being assessed “in the community,” this involved initially being assessed at home and then temporarily in a care home because their families were struggling with their behaviour. This was jointly funded by the NHS and social care - as the NHS were assessing but social care were providing the care and support. The young people did not have savings and so did not have to pay for the social care element. They may well have had to pay a contribution however, from their benefits.

I agree with Chris, seek advice asap from Age concern or Carers Uk helplines.


This is really, really odd. If they want mum to have two weeks residential assessment, they THEY should pay!
However, I’ve never come across this before. Would you feel able to tell us which local authority this is?