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Help to make our home adaptions

Gemw1Gemw1 Member Posts: 22 Connected
My home is currently unsecure for my disabled son I've had the council come and assess for alterations using disability grant. They are wanting to rip my new kitchen out too make my bathroom bigger when there's space outside to do this. They won't consider this idea unless I pay towards it which isn't something we can do. Have I got any other options anyone been in a similar situation 

Replies

  • atlas46atlas46 Member Posts: 827 Pioneering
    Hi @Gemw1

    How old is your son?

    Are you talking about Disabled Facilities Grant, from your local authority?

    If so, they have to undertake a financial assessment, as this may show you do not pay any thing.

    Hope this helps.

    I am tagging this for @Jean_Scope, who is an expert OT, who will give sound advice.
  • Jean_OTJean_OT Member Posts: 528 Pioneering
    Hi @Gemw1

    I assume that we are talking about a Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG). It which case the Occupational Therapist (OT) is limited by the criteria of the grant scheme. Which in basic terms is that they MUST meet the assessed needs of the disabled person by the CHEAPEST means. It is nearly always cheaper for them to reconfigure the layout of a home rather than build an extension.

    If you believe that there has been a mistake made, and in your case it would be cheaper to build the extension or that the proposed work won't meet your son's assessed needs than you should evidence this and ask that they look at it again.

    However, your choice is probably going to be between sacrificing your kitchen to have the local authority do the work to meet your son's needs by they cheapest means, or find a way to fund the additional cost of your preferred option yourself.  

    Actually it is good that the local authority OT is giving you the option to fund the difference, as when people refuse what the local authority is offering they are under no obligation to negotiate about more expensive alternatives , they can just walk away.

    If you don't have the private means to fund the difference between what is being offered and what you want, then normally your only other possibility to find the money is probably going to be applying to charitable funders. They normally want to know about your income and savings and why the work isn't being covered by statutory funding. To search for charitable grant givers use the tool at: https://www.scope.org.uk/support/disabled-people/search-grants

    NB: Further to the post from atlas46 above, about financial assessment for DFG -if your son is a child there is no financial assessment of your income etc for DFG Because DFG for children are not means-tested. However, regardless of age there is a maximum amount for the grant (currently £30K in England). 

    Sorry that I don't have more positive news for you.

    Best Wishes
    Jean
       

    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

  • Gemw1Gemw1 Member Posts: 22 Connected
    My son is 3 years old. The alterations of our kitchen wouldn't make our bathroom big enough with him being wheelchair bound in cannot even get his chair in and then get alongside him so hoists would be useless. I don't see how this is right we worked hard to get our home how it is too me it's not the easiest option I'm going to be complaining the system is disgusting 
  • atlas46atlas46 Member Posts: 827 Pioneering
    Hi @Gemw1

    As your son is 3 years old, you will not have to contribute towards the grant.

    The grant in England is £30,000, higher and lower in different parts of UK.

    I suggest you get your MP involved, at the earliest, to ensure you get the adaptations your son needs, not what your social services deem appropriate.

    Let us know if you need further assistance.
  • Jean_OTJean_OT Member Posts: 528 Pioneering
    Hi @Gemw1

    I hear and acknowledge your upset and frustration with this.

    Complaining about the criteria for DFG to your MP etc is a good thing to do as it helps to illustrate for them the implications of the rules that government puts in place. However, it is unlikely to change your individual circumstances.

    So just to clarify the OT isn't seeking the "easiest" (to use your words) solution to meeting your child's assessed needs they are seeking the most cost effective solution. They have no choice about this. Therefore you have three possibilities for fighting this:
    1) Evidence that they have incorrectly assessed your son's need
    2) evidence that the plans they have proposed will not meet his assessed needs
    3) show that your alternative proposal would be cheaper 

    Unfortunately how much time, effort and money that you have invested in getting your home how you like it isn't part of the DFG equation.    

    Best Wishes

    Jean

    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

  • Gemw1Gemw1 Member Posts: 22 Connected
    Thank you i understand I'm fighting for nothing I'll find another way as the plans don't allow adequate space for my son and his equipment to be used safely 
  • Gemw1Gemw1 Member Posts: 22 Connected
    The extension would make my kitchen harder to get my son's chair round is that a reasonable reason to get them to look again 
  • Jean_OTJean_OT Member Posts: 528 Pioneering
    Hi @Gemw1

    If you can evidence that the proposed plans prevent your son from being able to use the equipment he needs to use in the kitchen safely that is a strong argument in your favour. 

    If OT proposals meet your son's assessed needs, then the fact that a more expensive alternative might meet them better isn't relevant. It is always going to be easier for a wheelchair user to move around in a nice big space rather than a small one. However, as DFG are funded from the ever dwindling public purse most DFG adaptations are small and frequently the absolute bear minimum that will meet the persons assessed needs.

    Hope you manage to find a resolution you are happy with.

    Best Wishes
    Jean   

    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

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