Housing Options following TBI and ongoing memory issues

My brother had a car accident and suffered a traumatic brain injury 5 months ago - He was in a coma for 2 weeks and went to a specialist rehab unit for 3 months. He confabulates, has a 20 minute memory span and long term memory loss. There's obviously the weakness and physical injuries too but he has recovered remarkably from these.

He looks and behaves quite normally and although isnt the same as he used to be, people see him as able to cope.

He has a partner but since leaving hospital 5 weeks ago things have become fraught and he is now staying with me and he states they are breaking up. He can stay with me, but he doesn't want to long term and really i don't have the space.

I understand her pressure and its very difficult, he imagines things due to the confabulation and accuses her of things she really hasn't done but there's no reasoning with him because its a true recollection/memory to him. He accuses her, they argue, she gets upset... the cycle goes on and basically they cant carry on how they are.

He has urges/threatens to do the things he used to before the accident, go out drinking with friends for example, things he shouldn't and isnt really capable of doing now because he is very vulnerable but he is getting frustrated. We dont stop him but just talk him round and to date he hasn't carried his threats through. We are however very worried about this.

He wants his own place, near me preferably and wants me to support him with his finances and shopping etc. I am happy to do this.

I just wondered if there was anyway we could get him somewhere that isn't in the bowels of the city where he will be even more vulnerable. He doesn't need 24/7 care he just needs support and guidance and we as his family are able and willing to give this (which is good considering no one else seems to think he needs care).

He is currently with the community rehabilitation team having psychology support for 6 weeks starting today.

Really I'm asking if anyone has any advice regarding his housing options and where i should start. I have registered him with the local council but his banding is very low. I am in the process of asking for this to be raised due to his issues and have medical evidence to substantiate this.

Many thanks for your help.


9 Replies

  • bump? Sorry to do this but everything looks so busy and I hoped people with some guidance wouldn't miss my post

  • I really, really wish I could offer something up that would assist you in any way at all. You sound desperately in need of some guidance. Sadly it's not an area I personally know anything about, but I'm sure somebody who has more experience in this field will be along shortly with some ideas.

    Sorry I can't help you


  • Thanks for responding Andy and for reassuring me, at least i know others can see my post :) and someone with some experience of this might be able to give me a nudge in the right direction

  • Dear justinedocherty,

    We're sorry to hear about your brother's accident and resulting brain injury. If you'd like some information about housing options and support, or to just discuss your brother's situation further, can we suggest that you contact the Headway helpline? You can call our freephone number on 0808 800 22 44 or alternatively email helpline@headway.org.uk

    If you would like to read some information on our website, our page on rehabilitation and continuing care might be a good place to start: headway.org.uk/rehabilitati...

    Best wishes,


  • I have been in touch with our local contact at headway (birmingham) and asked about services and they said that Coventry is a black hole of service and realistically there's not much that can be offered here.

    My brother isn't entitled to social worker support so that's not an avenue we can pursue either.

  • I can't help, either, other than to say it's an all-too-familiar story; the UK does still have many black holes in this regard. 5 months is very early recovery, as I'm sure you're aware, but that doesn't help you today. Best wishes is all I can do, and just follow up every lead ( even this one!) - throw enough poop at the wall, and some at least will stick... If there's an insurance liability issue with the accident, be sure to show plenty of that stuff in the insurers' direction and see if at the very least a meaningful Case Manager can be appointed. If so, always have yourself or other present at meetings with him or (trust me - I didn't!) there will be very poor recall/implementation of suggested courses of action. Top sister x

  • Thats great advice for everyone, we do always go with him as he doesn't remember anything like that (and because he wants us there).

  • Hi Justine

    A few questions for you which you don't have to answer here, but considering them may help you decide on your next steps. You state that your brother is not entitled to social worker support. Who said this and do you agree with that decision? If not do you know how to appeal it? I ask this because being considered vulnerable enough for social services support may unlock other support for your brother and you. Headway's national helpline is likely to be able to advise on this area of law. I know you have rung Headway Birmingham but I get a sense that they answered from a practical perspective when perhaps you need something which is more based on the law and your rights?

    You state that your brother doesn't need 24 hour care, by which I assume you mean he can wash, dress, eat etc without assistance? You also state that he has a 20 minute memory span. In making a case for social worker support you may want to imagine what would happen if your brother did not have you to help him. Can he manage his own money, remember his passwords, does he know who people are, can he make every day decisions to keep himself safe. Can he work (was he working before)? Could he make the phone calls and navigate the systems you mention without your help etc? What is he accusing his partner of? Why is he thinking that way? If there was noone to talk him round from his threats what might happen? I ask all these questions because social service assessments assess risk and I wonder if the risks to your brother have been underestimated by social services? Again Headway may be able to explain the assessment and how to frame your answers so that the whole picture is seen by the assessing social worker.

    Onto the housing. There is a difference (legally) between being homeless and making an application to the local authority for housing. Currently from your description I would guess that you have done the latter. It may be that the local authority believe your brother to be in low priority because even though he has medical needs he is currently housed safely and for the forseeable future with you. You have not set a deadline for him to move and you are providing the necessary support for him. Unfortunately in the world of housing you are 'in competition' with others and so it is necessary to highlight why your brother is in priority need and that he is in fact homeless. Shelter provide excellent advice by email and telephone, check their website shelter.org.uk.

    I know you wanted to understand what the housing options are for your brother. Essentially it boils down to who owns the property he lives in, who pays for it, whether staff are on site to support him or whether support workers visit him. Here is a link below to what is called 'floating support'. It may be completely inappropriate but again may give you some ideas.


    Finally, you need to be aware that all the above services are often means tested, what money and capital your brother has may influence what can be provided.

    Sorry I can't provide better news, all of this is long winded and difficult, but I hope it helps a bit.


  • i really appreciate your help with this Leigh, i will have another read later and digest what you have said but i think its very helpful. Neil; last week got sent the social work assessment which while is not inaccurate doesn't really address the sorts of issues you have raised. I haven't sent it back yet (I was a bit miffed about it and felt we were signing something we shouldn't) I will formulate a response based on what you have suggested as it has certainly given me reason for pause.

    Thanks I will get back later regarding each issue your message is very helpful thanks


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