PAs vs. Carers? — Scope | Disability forum
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PAs vs. Carers?

BertieBot Community member Posts: 3 Listener
Does anyone have experience with what it’s like to employ a Personal Assistant rather than having help from a care service that visits you at home? 

Last November I started living alone at my own home again after 8 months living with my parents following the onset of FND which caused limited mobility, loss of coordination and fatigue. I wanted to live independently again to improve my mental health and learn how to live with the symptoms. 

It has been so much better than living with my parents and I’ve become more mobile and started to regain some confidence. At the start I set up bi-weekly visits by a local care company (1.5 hours twice a week) to help me maintain the household, help with food prep and check in on me. Now over 7 months later my stamina has improved and my needs have changed. I still need some help at home but I can now do tasks such as doing the washing up. (I never expected I would be thrilled to be doing dishes!) I’m ready to start trying to engage with the world again. I’m getting a mobility scooter soon and need someone to help with socialisation support.

The care company is very flexible and would be able to help but they often swap around who’s coming and I would really like to have some consistency. I have awful confidence at the moment and the thought of trying to go out with someone I don’t know very well is stressful.

I think a PA would be better suited for my current needs but I’m worried about taking on the responsibility of finding someone and then what if they aren’t reliable? I’m a very anxious person and anxiety affects my symptoms. 

I have financial support from the county council but it’s via a prepaid account so they’ve said I would be able to have a PA as long as they invoice.


  • Cher_Alumni
    Cher_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 5,741 Disability Gamechanger
    edited June 8
    Hi @BertieBot and a warm welcome to our online community, how is your Thursday going?

    It's so great to hear how happy you are living independently, and the joys of washing up! I completely get it. Sometimes the small things make a big difference, and the world is your oyster!

    Scope have an advice page around Employing a PA that is worth a read. And, I have some experience of working in a PA brokerage organisation personally. I know what difference a PA can make to people's lives, being able to write your own job description and person spec, recruiting someone you click with at interview and really personalising the support you get. There are lots of positive stories! There is the risk of an employee being unreliable, like in any other job, but equally they could be awesome. 

    I think perhaps weigh up the pros and cons of each option, and follow that gut instinct. Also, maybe explore if there are any PA brokerage organisations you could work with, to take some of the worry away?

    It would be fab if you could keep us posted with how you get on. Wishing you all the very best.

    FYI: I've moved your thread to our Independent living category :)
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  • BertieBot
    BertieBot Community member Posts: 3 Listener
    Thank you for the advice. I’ll definitely check out the Scope advice page. I didn’t know there were PA brokerage organisations to help. I thought I’d have to do it all on my own. It’s very reassuring to know what help is out there. 


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