The postman delivered us a Care Plan today following our visit from Cross Roads Care Service at the end of July. This will mean a Care Support Worker will stay with my husband for 3 hours (free of charge) and for any hour more than that the charge per hour will be £13.50 while I am able to go out. The 3 hours "free" are conditional upon using the same hours, same day, each week but if the sitting service is required on an Ad Hoc basis then the charge of £13.50 per hour applies. I would suggest that anyone who is not aware of this service should check it out. I live in Solihull and I know this service is also available in Birmingham. However, I'm not sure if other areas operate a similar facility.
Then, this afternoon we had a visit from a lady who works at the local Marie Curie Hospice. They operate a Day Centre for people who have debilitating and disabling illnesses as well as an In-Patient hospice. This facility was recommended to us by the Parkinsons Specialist Nurse. My husband will be collected and brought back home afterwards There are only 13 places for this Centre on each of the 3 days they operate, and two trained nurses are on hand along with several volunteers who ensure that the people attending the Centre enjoy a pleasant few hours together. We are both going to see the place in a couple of weeks when we return from a few days in the Lake District, and my husband seems really keen to give it a try. They are very much aware of PSP and all its complex symptoms, etc. and I feel that not only will a few hours apart give my husband something of his own to think about, it will utlimately benefit both of us by allowing me a few hours to have some "me" time.
I feel that at last I shall be able to "share the load" just for a few hours knowing that Tony will be looked after in a safe place. How long he will be well enough to leave the house there is no way of knowing, but for the time being I intend to take full advantage of what is being offered to help re-charge my batteries and give Tony a little bit of independence again.