Daily Express

Mum sold her home to pay £200,000 for care

- By Sarah O’Grady

WI­DOW Lily Capell lost ev­ery­thing she had spent a life­time sav­ing for when she was forced to sell her home and use the £211,000 it raised to pay for her care.

NHS West Suf­folk Clin­i­cal Com­mis­sion­ing Group re­fused her ap­pli­ca­tion for con­tin­u­ing health­care al­though she met vi­tal cri­te­ria to qual­ify.

Daugh­ter Shirley Le­siak, 63, gave up work as a travel agent to care for her mother be­fore she was moved to a £800-a-week care home in Sud­bury, Suf­folk, in 2010.

She said: “My mum scored “se­vere” on two of the 11 cri­te­ria needed to get the ex­tra health­care so had a fight­ing chance to keep the home she and Dad loved.

“She scored ‘high’ on three other cri­te­ria and ‘mod­er­ate’ on the oth­ers. She had enough points to qual­ify but then the so­cial care ex­perts had a meet­ing and changed the cri­te­ria.

“It was aw­ful, un­der­hand and un­fair. The sys­tem is fixed.” Mrs Capell died, aged 92, in 2015 and Mrs Le­siak, and her brother John, 70, bat­tled through a five-year ap­pli­ca­tion and ap­peal pro­ce­dure.

Mrs Capell had Alzheimer’s, heart fail­ure, poor mo­bil­ity, os­teo­poro­sis and dou­ble in­con­ti­nence.

“I want to know ex­actly how ill a per­son has to be be­fore they qual­ify for con­tin­u­ing health care,” said Mrs Le­siak, a mother of two from Colch­ester, Es­sex.

“It’s al­most as if the Clin­i­cal Com­mis­sion­ing Groups are us­ing de­men­tia as an ex­cuse not to pay.

“Health Sec­re­tary Matt Han­cock said no one should have to sell their homes, he should tell that to his own con­stituency West Suf­folk Clin­i­cal Com­mis­sion­ing Group.”

A spokesman for the CCG ad­mit­ted mis­takes were made dur­ing the as­sess­ment but said that the er­rors made no dif­fer­ence to the de­ci­sion.

He said: “There are na­tion­ally set el­i­gi­bil­ity guide­lines re­lat­ing to NHS Con­tin­u­ing Health­care (CHC) strictly ad­hered to by the clin­i­cal com­mis­sion­ing group.

“Mrs Capell had a full NHS CHC as­sess­ment and in her case the Mul­ti­dis­ci­plinary Team rec­om­mended she was not el­i­gi­ble.

“We ac­knowl­edge that some mis­takes were made dur­ing the as­sess­ment process.

“The in­de­pen­dent re­view panel com­mented on this, and we have ac­knowl­edged that best prac­tice was not ad­hered to at all times. Our pro­cesses have been amended as a re­sult.

“How­ever, our orig­i­nal de­ci­sion re­gard­ing Mrs Capell’s el­i­gi­bil­ity for NHS CHC has gone through ev­ery pos­si­ble stage of ap­peal and has been up­held.”

 ??  ?? Lily Capell, aged 19, and the beloved house she was forced to sell
Lily Capell, aged 19, and the beloved house she was forced to sell
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