It is a sad fact that not every care facility provides the same level of care and cost is a clear factor. Care homes that are run privately may offer better quality facilities and care but at a price unaffordable to many. We have seen care homes where understaffing means that although the basic level of care is met, the individual’s views and feelings may get lost amongst the many other demands on care staff. Professional deputies therefore have a role in ensuring that their clients have the best possible quality of life by ensuring that more than just the basics are met.

Property and affairs deputies support individuals in care homes in a variety of ways. By budgeting they ensure that P’s assets are used for their own needs as far as possible. Deputies have the skills and resources to work with local authorities to ensure P contributes fairly to their care when appropriate. The process of financial assessments when P’s assets are nearing the threshold for local authority contribution can be confusing and a professional deputy will ensure P only pays for what they have to.

Professional deputies look at the holistic needs of each individual when in a care home. We work closely with care providers and other relevant professionals to improve stimulation such as companionship, music or reminiscence therapy. We also instruct physical therapies including physiotherapy, occupational therapy or hydrotherapy. Often these therapies cannot be organised by the care homes or local authorities because of a lack of resources. We have seen many examples of where privately funded therapies provide significant benefit to clients in care homes.

Property and affairs deputies can also give P a voice when care standards fall below what is reasonably expected. They can challenge care homes, local authorities or private companies on their behaviour and increase accountability in the care environment.