Live independently at home with outstanding live-in care

Established in 1987, Christies Care is a family owned and run live-in care agency. Rated outstanding by the CQC and registered with the Scottish Care Inspectorate and the Jersey Care Commission we have grown to be one of the largest providers of 24 hour, 7 day a week care in the UK.

Call 01728 605 107 or message us to find out about our live-in care.

Live-in Care

Everybody wants to stay at home for as long as possible. Nobody wants to be sent to a care home.

Live in care means you can stay at home forever. Your carer lives with you, in your home, giving round-the-clock support.

She becomes a familiar face; a companion as much as a carer.

You will be in your own home, follow your own routines, keep your garden and pets, keep up with your friends and neighbours and live your life just as you want.

Your family can go back to being family again. They know that you are being well looked after, and can stop worrying.

They can even have a holiday.

Established in 1987, Christies Care is a family owned and run live-in care agency.

We are rated Outstanding by CQC (only 3.5% of all care organisations are rated outstanding) and registered with the Scottish Care Inspectorate.

Our emphasis on recruiting the best people and giving them the best training means our clients truly get the most outstanding live in carers in the country.

I was looking after Mum, and trying to keep my own family on track.

I wasn’t giving anybody the attention they needed and I just couldn’t do it any more. Now I can breathe. And Mum is Mum again, not a duty.”

CR, Daughter of client

What is live in care?

Live in care is just that; a well-trained live in carer comes and lives with you, in your home.

He or she is there to look after you, to give you the care and help you want and need, so you don’t have to go to a residential or care home.

Christies Care’s carers are so well trained that our live in care is right for almost anyone.

Perhaps you need care for a few weeks while recovering from an operation or you need hoisting and lots of help.

In either case, live in care is the answer.

Why have 24 hour live in care?

With 24/7 live in care, you are in your own house and have the freedom to do just what you want, whenever you want. You are the boss, the carer is only there to help you to do the things you can’t do any more. You are living life your own way.

Read a great example of one of our carers helping their client.

In a care home, you have much less freedom. Instead of a carer fitting in with your wishes, you have to fit into an institution. In fact, in recent research carried out by the Live-in Care Hub and the University of Kent, they found that a quarter of care and nursing homes effectively keep people prisoner; they wouldn’t let people outside the grounds, at all.

Almost everyone is happier at home. You sleep in your own bed, eat the food you want, served on your own plates, in your own house. You do what you want, when you want. You are surrounded by the neighbours, garden, places, furniture and shops that you have always known.

Almost nobody wants to be committed to an institutional life.

Read more about the Positive Effect of Live in Care.

With 24/7 live in care, you are likely to be healthier than if you go to a care home or a nursing home. Why? Because you have one person there, all the time, to look after you.

In fact recent research shows that with live in care, you are less likely to fall than if you are in a care home. Professor Dawn Skelton (Professor of Ageing and Health at Glasgow Caledonian University and an expert on falls) says “the data certainly suggests that live in care is associated with fewer falls than seen in residential care, perhaps because of the opportunities to be more active an engaged in self care and the ethos of moving more, sitting less.”

Read the full Better at Home report.

Do you ever think “it is lovely weather today, I’d love to go to the beach.” Do you ever decide to go for a walk a bit later because it looks like rain. Do you ever feel like asking some friends over for lunch today?

With live in care, you can keep this spontaneity. You can decide what you want to do, and when you want to do it.

Unlike hourly care or care in a care home, a live in carer has time to be flexible and to look after you properly. In a care home, the staff are under pressure to look after lots of residents, some of whom demand more attention than the silent figure left sitting alone in his or her room.

It is the one to one care that makes live in care stand out, compared to care or nursing homes. Most care homes work on a ratio of four or more clients to one carer, and even the best care or nursing home will only give a maximum of about 3 hours of one to one care a day, while a live in carer is there to help you, all the time.

And live-in care costs about the same as (or less than) a good nursing or care home, so you are getting miles better care for a similar price.

With one to one care, your carer is able to give time and attention to helping make you happy. And to mold herself to your wants, needs and routine.

If someone has recommended a nursing home, in most cases live-in care is a better alternative. Our live in carers can do almost all the tasks that nursing home staff do (including helping with PEG feeds, changing dressings, blood sugar prick tests and insulin pens).

And if a nurse is needed for something like an injection, our carers work closely with District Nurses and help them arrange their visits. About a third of our clients would otherwise be in a nursing home but are having a far better quality of life as a result of live in care.

Consider the service you get at home with a live-in carer. How much would you pay to get the same service in a care home? The weekly cost of live-in care is in the region of £1,000 to £1,500. The savings are greatly increased when a couple both need care. They can share one live-in carer, rather than paying two care home fees. It is also substantially cheaper than having three carers working in eight-hour shifts.

What do live in carers do?

It all depends on you, the client.

If you need help moving (maybe you need a hoist to get out of bed) the carer will help you. If you want someone to encourage you to do the exercises your physio has given you, the carer will encourage you. If you want help cooking, the carer will help.

Mostly though, the carers are there to let you lead your normal life, at home. They are there to help you do whatever you want, and to always encourage you to be as independent as possible.

And if you want to go and watch the cricket – the carer will help.

Every live in carer at Christies Care gets the best training in the country to equip them to give you the help you want and need.

Read about some of our carers going the extra mile for their clients.

“I have recommended you because of our experience of your lovely carers.

They are your front line troops, and, as far as your clients are concerned, THEY are Christies! They are the ones you should be thanking!”

Jack Storer, age 101 Christies Care client

If you want to get in touch with a current client, to ask them about the pros and cons of live-in care, please contact us and we will introduce you.

Who are our live in carers?

Our carers are just that, people who care.

We have a rigorous recruitment process, but most of all we are looking for people who have empathy; who have a caring attitude.

It doesn’t matter what previous experience a carer has, as all carers go through our in-depth induction course where they are given the skills needed to go out and care for their clients. We are the only live-in care agency that insists that all carers have 11 days of face to face training before we let them meet our clients.

We are fussy, of course. We only recruit the best. And our whole recruitment and training process is designed to help us be sure that the potential carer is indeed right to be a live-in carer.

It starts with our telephone interview, where our team talk to potential carers. Here the potential carer has to pass the “mum” test (the recruiter asks him or herself, would I have this person to look after my mother?). If he or she fails that, then we reject. If he or she passes, she is passed onto our compliance team. This team vets the carer further. Going through his or her work history and getting as many references as we need to see if the carer is honest, reliable, trustworthy and respectful.

If the carer has been successful, he or she arrives here for training. Eleven intensive days of face to face residential training. During which time the training team can really see what the character of the prospective carers is like. If the prospective carer shows a character flaw during the training, we tell him or her that he or she is not suitable for us

Only the very best get through and graduate to be live- in carers.

Read about some of them below.

What is live in care: how does it work?

01

You ring our office, explain your situation and ask questions.

02

A free assessment visit from our Local Area Advisor. This answers more of your questions and lets you get to know us better.

03

You set a start date – when is convenient?

04

The first carer arrives and starts to care for their client.

05

We all talk about how it is going and what we all can learn.

06

A second visit from the Local Area Advisor to see how everything is going, face to face.

07

The first carer has a break – she is booked back in a few weeks. The second carer comes, and builds on the work the first carer has done toward helping their client to be as independent as possible.

08

The second carer is booked to return and is replaced by the third carer.

09

The first carer returns to replace the third carer and a rota of regular carers is established.

We make live in care a success by doing four simple things

To be a success, we need to know as much as possible about you. The tasks you want or need the carer to do; your ambitions – how can the carers help you achieve day to day and long term goals?

We also need to learn enough about you and your personality to be able to find the right carers.

We get this information over the telephone, email, skype or face-to-face, whatever suits you, our client. Often we send one of our Local Area Advisors to visit our client, to do a full assessment. This visit is free and carries no obligation.

Our team is here to answer all of your questions. If you want, we will ask our local area advisor to come and talk to you and explain anything in detail. This visit is free.

We spend a lot of time and money to recruit the best possible carers. Our carer recruitment, retention, training and selection is the most important part of the company. Without outstanding carers, we are nothing.

And we don’t let standards slip, we would rather have too few carers than the wrong carers. Luckily, our reputation means that we have a high retention rate and enough good quality people applying so that we are never short of good carers.

Training is essential – everyone needs training and that training needs to be updated. So we are the only live in care agency which insists that all carers go through an 11 day residential induction training course, so that they learn enough to be excellent carers.

We know that one person can’t stay with a client forever. Everybody needs a break. So we build a team of maybe three or four carers, each of whom stays with you for however long you and the carer want (it may be four, six, eight weeks at a time), and then is replaced by another familiar, team member.

Over the years, we have found that a team of three or four is much more stable than the alternative of having one ‘main’ carer, who stays for a long time and is covered by a short term ‘holiday’ carer.

We start to build this team by introducing carers for a fortnight at a time. This is long enough for you to really get to know whether you like this carer (and vice versa). If you get on well with her carer, the carer then can stay for longer. If not (which is rare – over 90% of carers are asked to return by their clients), you never has to see that carer again.

When to have live-in care

People usually have a live in carer when they need full time help and support.

It may be that you simply can’t cope alone and need a live in carer to stay as independent as possible, at home.

It may be that you need a live in carer in an emergency. You may have had a stroke or a fall – and suddenly need help.

Many of our clients use our service when their family member or carer needs a holiday.

Similarly, we often provide live-in care when our client needs temporary support through a period of convalescence or recuperation, for example when returning from hospital.

Or, you might try live-in care first, while considering whether to go to a residential or nursing home.

The consumer magazine Which? now has an Elderly Care section which illustrates the pros and cons of live-in care.

How do I Pay for care?

We know that care is expensive, whether a few hours a day from a reputable local agency or a full-time carer from us. Our “Live in Care Costs” page will help explain more.

A Choice of Supervision, Management and Control

Most of this website describes our service where we are a CQC -registered, domiciliary care agency. We employ the carer and take full responsibility for carrying out care tasks properly and in accordance with current regulations. A week of live-in care costs between £1,000 and £1,500, depending on our client’s condition.

There is an alternative

If you are confident that the manner in which the carer carries out their tasks will not be subject to supervision, direction or control by anyone, then you may use us as an introducing agency, where we don’t employ the carer but introduce them to you, to work under contract to you and to carry out your wishes.

This arrangement costs less, overall, than one where we employ the carer and ranges from about £700 to £950 a week. It is subject to rules set out in the Finance Act 2014.

If you should decide to use our introductory service, then to preserve the genuine self-employed nature of the carer’s work, the following rules must be followed:

  • The manner in which the carer carries out their tasks must not be subject to (or to a right of) supervision, direction or control by anyone;
  • The carer will be self-employed. We will have made sure that they have a NI number and self-employed tax reference or have at least started the process of registration. We will also ensure that they complete a tax return each year and settle their NI and tax obligations. If a carer cannot produce evidence of this we will stop introducing them to clients;
  • The carer is free to work with their choice of client and for more than one agency. They may accept work for a portfolio of clients, each for a comparatively short time of a few weeks, and they will decide whether or not they wish to work for a particular week or set number of weeks;
  • The carer will be trained by us to be ‘suitable’ to meet your wishes and needs. By this we mean that they will be competent to carry out agreed wishes and normal social care tasks;
  • It is important to evidence this relationship and we ask our clients and carers to agree and sign a contract for services, which will set out clearly the carer’s responsibility to do her work without supervision, direction or control.

There are certain aspects where the two services have much in common:

  • We recruit, vet and train all our carers to the same award-winning induction standards;
  • We make the same initial visits to our clients, to assess needs and wishes and to examine risks. These visits are free of charge;
  • We expect to achieve the same standard of continuity and consistency in care and carers;
  • We offer the same out-of-hours service.

There is a third choice for our client:

  • In this scenario the carer is subject to supervision, management and control by the client, while working with their client;
  • It is for the client to employ the carer, deducting tax and NI;
  • That choice is contained in our contract with our client.

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