Wednesday, 30 May 2012


I remember this one. It caused so much confusion among the team as to what to do and how to go about it. For years we had toddled along 'providing homecare' very much with the attitude of doing as much as you could in a visit so that the service user didn't. After all, didn't they deserve to be pampered and looked after?

So, reablement....whats it all about?

' developing specialist home care re-ablement teams that worked intensively with new service users to increase their skills, confidence, and ability to live independently.-Social Policy and Research Unit'

As a carer you had to have a change of mindset as to how the service was delivered.Admittedly, it was hard to begin with to take a step back and not get towels ready, or have breakfast waiting on the table...would it be a role reversal and the carer saying, 'Come on Gertie get the kettle on, i'm parched!'

I loved it. There is so much satisfaction having encouraged someone to do as much as they are able to do. That is the key to getting it right and making it work.However, the rest of the team going in also have to be consistent with the progress. This can only be attained by reading the notes in each visit to see how things are going. Of course it doesn't help if all you see is 'made c.o.t, got breakfast, helped to dress'!

Who made the tea? Who got breakfast? What did they have? How much of getting dressed did the service user do on their own? The notes aren't about what you as a carer is about how the service user is progressing.As a carer you need to know this information and the notes are the only contact you have between yourselves. It was so easy to be doing the first few days and getting a routine together and a real picture of ability. You have a day off and the next time you are in... you see that most tasks have been done for them. How frustrating this could be!

I hope things have changed. I hope that with each person the time is taken to continue to encourage.I hope communication between teams and officers or supervisors is acted upon. After all, its not about the paperwork and emails its about the service users....People.

'Individually, we are one drop.Together, we are an ocean.' - Ryunosuke Satoro    SPRU Social policy research unit


  1. You are so right fluffy wings. Done correctly Reablement is so much more rewarding. It's wonderful to see Jim and Gertie gain confidence after a long stay in hospital, when they are suddenly back home, alone and without the social contact they had with other patients. Slowly goal by goal, you watch them take tentative steps toward independence again. Some manage in days, others a full six weeks. But with time, encouragement confidence grows, and they are truly thankful for a service many never knew existed. I love working in Reablemnt.

    1. Great to hear from you.Keep up the good work, you are doing a wonderful job.

  2. Hi, I have just come off shift as a Reablment Community Carer and have discovered the Carers' Coffeepot. It is nice to find something for us Community Carers. After todays shift I have decided we must be the most underated profession going. Some of you will probably say that you knew this along, but hey, I am a bit slow on the uptake.
    In our work, we care for people with so many different dibilitating illnesses, Dementia, Parkinsons, various Cancers, MS, Motor Neurone Disease, Amputees and lots more. This is far from an easy job when done properly.
    We are not medically trained like Nurses, we can can not apply or change dressings, catheter bags or tell people what their medication is for and nor do we know the answers to many questions asked by the people we care for or their families, although some professthey know more than they do and often give out the wrong information.
    Most of us are in the job because we care, we want to help.
    But do people realise that as caring people, we deal with things in a day that most would choose not to see or would not be able to cope with, we are not just "a cleaner" or "someone that empties commodes. so please can someone tell me why our skills are not more widely recognised and acknowledged more.

  3. Hello there and welcome. I hope you have that well deserved cup of tea after coming off your shift! I'm so glad you have highlighted the skills you have as a carer that do go unrecognised. You do the job because you care and want to help,you also do it with sincerity, compassion and above all you make the difference to each person you visit. Thank you for being you and making the difference.