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Respite and Short Breaks (Older People)

Information about taking a Residential Respite or Short Break

Adult Respite and Short Break contacts can be accessed from the 'More pages in this section' menu.

A 'Short Breaks Statement' is available from the 'Related Downloads' section of this page. The aim of the statement is to assist carers and people with support needs.

Arranging a residential respite break

You and your family or carers may wish to take advantage of a short respite break in a care home in Orkney. Depending on your personal care needs, breaks can be booked at St Peter’s House, Smiddybrae House, St Rognvald’s House, Kalisgarth or Braeburn Court and at Very Sheltered Housing, Eunson Kloss.

To arrange an assessment for a respite break, you or your carer can contact the Adult Services Teams at School Place on 01856873535. If you do not already have a worker in the Adult Services Teams one will be allocated to you to do a Single Shared Assessment and book the break that you need.

Availability and costs of respite breaks

Generally, six weeks of respite breaks can be booked in any one year although more may be available should you be waiting for a permanent residential care place. Breaks can be taken by the week or fortnight, but can also be for a couple of nights or a weekend at a time. In special circumstances, longer breaks may be possible, depending on availability.

Charges for respite breaks are assessed on your income and also your capital or savings, but not on the value of your home. More information is available in the charges menu in this section??????

If you need a respite break for a particular date, for instance to cover a carer’s holiday, please apply as early as possible to have the best chance of getting the dates you need.

You can set up a series of respite breaks to cover the year if this suits you.

What do I need to do to prepare for a respite break?

Once the booking is made, your worker will check on transport arrangements to get you there and home again. You may wish to make your own arrangements using Dial-A-Bus, for example. Sometimes it is possible for the respite unit’s bus to collect you and take you home.

You will need to ensure that you have sufficient medication for your break and to see you a few days into your return home. Your worker will ask your GP to fax your medical details to the respite unit in case a GP needs to be called to attend you when you are there.

It would be wise to make sure your house is secure and to have someone check on things for you when you are away. If you have pets, you will need to arrange for their care.

If you attend a day centre or lunch club you should let them know that you will not be attending whilst you are in respite. Similarly you should let Home Care or the Frozen Meals Service and the Community Nurses know if you use them and when they need to restart your services.
If you would have difficulty managing any of these preparations, your worker will be able to help you.

What should I take with me?

  • Clothes, shoes and slippers. Your clothes should be labelled if you wish them to be laundered whilst you are on your break.
  • Your usual toiletries, razor; glasses etc.
  • Reading material, knitting or hobby materials; your radio or music player, if portable. Electrical equipment must be in good condition and safe to use.
  • Any dressings or pads that you will need
  • Mobile phone and/ or a list of personal contact numbers.
  • Any treats or special foods you enjoy.
  • Any walking aids, OT aids such as a helping hand and your wheelchair if you need one.

Other Information

  • If you are new to respite at a unit, you will usually have a visit from a member of staff from the unit before your break to say hello and check on any particular requirements you may have.
  • You will get a letter confirming the respite break and any other details relating to it.
  • If you cancel your break, you will not be charged, but please let your worker know as soon as possible so that someone else can use the break instead.
  • You may wish to check that your home insurance covers your property whilst you are in respite as the respite units do not insure your property.
  • Exceptionally, a respite break may need to be cancelled or moved to another unit, if this happens we will give you as much notice as possible.

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