Advice for planning the move into a care home

When the decision has been made to make the move into a care home, there are a number of things to think about whilst planning the actual move.  Forward planning will help to ease what can be a challenging time for all involved, just as any house move can be.

Overcoming any personal concerns before the move

For the person moving home it can be a big change, so it is important for family supporting the move to be supportive and considerate of their feelings, as the thought of the move is bound to be daunting.  Whilst there will be lots to think about and organise, our advice is to remember to take time out to listen to any concerns in order to be able to find answers and offer reassurance.

We find those who visit us here at The Huntington and Langham Estate a number of times before the big day, become more familiar with their new home and by meeting the team and residents, they start to build new friendships quickly.  If time and budget permits, it is also worth considering a short respite stay, in preparation for a full time move.

Residents on the terrace

Arranging the best day to move into a residential home

For many families of a relative planning to move into a care home, due to work and family commitments the weekend is generally the best time, however not all residential care homes will take admissions over the weekend.  We are more than happy to welcome you all any day of the week.

“I love to be able to welcome our new residents and their families over a weekend, as we understand the pressures of juggling work and family commitments during the week and want to make the move a stress free for everyone”  Sarah Chapman, Director

We suggest agreeing the schedule with the wider family, as far in advance as possible so that the day itself runs smoothly.  When you arrive its easy to just stay in the new room, but at Huntington House and Langham Court we encourage families to take time to go with their loved one to meet other residents and staff members, or to spend time in the shared areas together.

Our team will be on hand to welcome you all and we are conscious how upsetting the big goodbye on the first day can be, so are happy if the family slip away whilst our team involve our new resident in doing something, so there isn’t the big break.

Welcome to The H&L Estate

 Packing for a move into a care home

As with any move it is good to plan ahead what to bring along to your new home.

There may be some items you want to replace or treasured possession not to be forgotten.  If you are packing for someone else, it can be easy to forget or not know their favourite items of clothing for example so again, it’s good to open up the conversation well in advance, to give time to decide what is or isn’t coming.

As space may be a little more limited, it’s good to check this when you visit the home and plan how the items of furniture coming along will fit in the available space.

A few tips we share with families are:

  • Electronic devices – any devices being taken with you into a new home will need to be in working order and in some cases checked by an expert (PAT tested) to make sure they are not a fire risk. So if there is a favourite radio or alarm clock which you plan to bring it is worth checking this in advance so not to be without it.
  • Pets – At the Estate we are happy to discuss loyal pets also joining our extended family, and will just have a few questions to check before giving the green light.
  • Clothing – It is a good idea to label clothes, as this will help them to not get muddled up in the laundry.

Top tip for making a care home feel like home

At H&L we actively encourage our residents to place items around the home, not just in their private rooms, as you will see if you visit us we have an eclectic array of artwork and photography around the walls all from our residents.

artworkProfessional Elderly Care - Cosy living room at Huntington House in Surrey

We have a great guide to help families think about how to decorate their loved one’s space as the things we have around our home generally have a memory or significance attached to them.

All of our rooms will be freshly decorated for your arrival and you’ll have a choice of colour, with new residents welcome to bring their own bedding to make their private room more familiar.

Decorating

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We also encourage you to bring your own furniture and will make our best efforts to make the room available before move day to bring in any pieces of furniture into the home.

Residential Home

Let our family look after your family

We work hard to make The Huntington and Langham Estate a home away from home and empower each person to continue living how they wish to.  We don’t talk about activities and interests, we talk about life and living and have received some wonderful feedback from both our residents and their families which you can see here

Testimonial

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We would love to invite you to visit our beautiful estate.

Please contact us via the web form or give us a call on 01428 604600 – one of our friendly team members will be happy to help you.

 

Royal Reminiscence

Whilst there was a somewhat sombre atmosphere around The Huntington & Langham Estate since hearing the news of the death of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, the residents have been joining together in periods of reminiscence with wistful storytelling.  The joy of hearing stories that might otherwise have been lost in the sands of time, has however lifted the mood.

Parties on the high seas

A resident of Huntington House shared memories of attending parties on the Royal Yacht as a child, invited alongside her father who served as an engineer on the vessel.

Hide and Seek with a future Queen

A resident of Langham Court remembers her mother telling the story of helping to hide a young Elizabeth during a game of hide and seek while working in member of the Royal Family’s household.

Writing history

Upon hearing these unique perspectives from Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, the residents of The Huntington & Langham Estate were provided with pages from the book of condolences from Guildford Cathedral, where these stories have now been recorded and immortalised.

Hidden treasure

Over the next few weeks we will also be collecting current coins, stamps and other memorabilia, which will be buried in a time capsule in the grounds of the estate.  Alongside planting a Royal Gala apple tree, which will bear fruit around the anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s death every year.

The importance of short term Respite Care

The importance of short term Respite Care

The demand for Respite Care during the summer months is unsurprisingly high, with many families heading off on holidays whilst their children are on the summer break from school and others planning action packed days, during the warm weather.

For those who have a caregiving role in the family, the need to balance the support they give with their wider family can be challenging at this time of year.  Whilst caregiving is very rewarding, it is demanding both physically and mentally and being able to take time away, can be hugely beneficial to health and wellbeing.

What is the purpose of Respite Care?

Taking a break from caring for someone else is the main reason people consider respite care, giving carers time for themselves.  This can be based on day care, care in the home or a short stay at a residential care home of 1 to 4 weeks.

Professional Elderly Care - Huntington and Langham resident with children

When is it time to consider Respite Care?

There are many reason caregivers make the decision to organise Respite Care for a person they support and our recommendation where possible is to plan this ahead of time during busy periods like the Summer Holidays.

  • Simply take time out to reboot and recharge physically and mentally
  • To enable them to spend more time with children or the family during school holidays
  • When the list of general household to do’s aren’t getting done and they need to catch up on themselves.
  • During renovation work to the home, which is likely to be disruptive
  • The need to attend medical appointments or treatment themselves
  • They simply just need a break

What are the benefits of short term residential respite care?

Whilst there are a number of options available for a respite break, such as asking friends or family to help out, employing a live-in carer or sourcing home care from a paid carer, there are added benefits from opting for short term residential care.

A short term stay in a luxury all inclusive residential home like Huntington House, can be a holiday in itself for people who need extra help in their day to day lives or live alone with change of scenery and the peace of mind being in a welcoming, safe and secure environment.

These short stays can also be a great opportunity to trial the services and environment of a Residential home, if a full time move is being considered.  The socialness of joining in activities and chatting to the other residents and staff is often the thing people enjoy the most from their stay.

Respite Care for people living with Dementia can also be beneficial when it is in a specialist dementia care home like Langham Court.  With the reassurance the person living with dementia’s needs will be taken care of, gives carers peace of mind to have a break whilst the stimulation of taking part in activities created with individual abilities and needs in mind can be a positive experience for those living with dementia

Residential care

 

Who pays for respite care?

Where respite care can’t be fully funded within the family, there is funding available for respite care and local councils will complete an assessment of both your individual living and financial circumstances.   This will be completed as a carer’s assessment and a needs assessment for the person who needs the care.

The Huntington & Langham approach to respite care

Whether recovering from an operation, injury or medical condition, or if you’re a carer and need somewhere safe for your loved one to stay while you take some time for yourself, our respite care is second to none and comes part and parcel with complete peace of mind.

We create a personalised care plan before any stay so that you and your loved ones can relax, knowing we’re providing specialist support in a comfortable home from home.   We often find people settle into the home very quickly and extend their stay.

“I don’t think you could find many Huntington’s. It’s extremely well run. Different people get different things. I love it! I came for two weeks and have stayed for months. It’s the attitude you just couldn’t fault. They have been very understanding to me as a smoker as so many places don’t these days. AND they’ve let me have my dog Woolly – they had a vote on it and then Maggie said “Woolly is welcome!” Respite Resident at Huntington House

You’ll be welcomed into the family and are encouraged to make the most of all that we have to offer here, such as an exciting activities programme, freshly-cooked meals and beautiful gardens, along with high quality care from our fantastic team.

Huntington House is a leading accredited Level One Dragonfly Residential Home.  In our recent audit we received an Excellent rating from the team at Meaningful Care Matters, who described our care as:

“A highly engaged service with a high value on meaningful moments and a true person-centred philosophy, which is congruent in look, sound and feel as well as with regulatory compliance requirements. People’s individuality and expression is evident, and people can express that freedom and be themselves.

MCM Dragonfly Care

Our Home Maker team have a great mix of different skills and interests which helps offer variety in the day; with some residents enjoying the more structured activities such as quizzes whilst others value time with the team who are great at offering more 1-to-1 time and conversations.

How can I organise Respite Care?

If you, as a caregiver, need some time out, or you feel your loved one might benefit from a change of scenery, our respite and daycare services could be ideal for you.

We encourage anyone thinking of Respite care to come and visit us to take a tour of the homes and Estate, simply give us a call on 01428 604600 or Email us at huntington@hlestate.co.uk

 

Leading the way as a Dragonfly accredited Residential Care Home

Huntington House continues to lead the way in the provision of residential care and as the first accredited Level One Dragonfly Home, achieving an Excellent rating from Meaningful Care Matters, for the delivery of the Dragonfly Approach in 2022.

Offering a highly engaged service with a high value on meaningful moments and a true person-centred philosophy. People’s individuality and expression is evident and people can express that freedom and be themselves.

“I don’t think you could find many Huntington’s. It’s extremely well run. Different people get different things. I love it! I came for two weeks and have stayed for months.

It’s the attitude you just couldn’t fault. They have been very understanding to me as a smoker as so many places don’t these days. AND they’ve let me have my dog Woolly – they had a vote on it and then Maggie said “Woolly is welcome!” Resident of Huntington House

Molly and ChristineMeaningful Care Matters conducted the audit during June 2022, accrediting the home with flying colours, recognising the hugely impressive achievement of the whole team at the Huntington & Langham Estate after the challenges of the last two years from managing Covid-19.

On receiving the news Charlie Hoare, Managing Director of The Huntington and Langham Estate said:

“I’m so very proud of our team, and completely overwhelmed with the outcome, especially having managed to maintain such a high standard of true person-centred care when Covid-19 has presented so many challenges along the way.

Reading the report made me incredibly emotional, having needed to navigate the government Covid-19 guidance over the last 2 years, whilst maintaining our family ethos and the Dragonfly Approach at Huntington House.  Knowing that the effort to balance it all, has had a positive impact on people’s lives makes it all worthwhile.

There is something so fundamental about looking after each other; it is why we exist as humans. Life in care homes should reflect life in general, and while the care industry still has a way to go to achieve a truly holistic approach, being the first accredited Level One Dragonfly Home is arguably the best evidence that we are leading the way.

For me, both professionally and personally, it’s the positive comments from the people that live and work here that are so important, as well as feedback from family members.

Having an independent audit by Meaningful Care Matters, ensures that we remain focused on the most important part of running a care home; the people and their freedom to be themselves.

The expert insights provided in this years report, into how to embrace people’s individuality, and the impact of the environment on their experience of life in a care home, will become our care encyclopaedia for the next year, until the next audit!”

Established in 2019, Meaningful Care Matters (MCM) focuses on the development of resilient relationship-centred cultures of care shaped by the people living and working within them. MCM believe that caregiving is meaningful for everyone involved when cultures of care express the personhood of people within them. In these person-centred services both “caregivers” and recipients of care can flourish.

The Dragonfly approach is about the ‘whole person’. While traditional care focuses primarily around clinical needs, the Dragonfly approach gives control back to the person who is being cared for and values the person on an emotional and social level, meaning each person is “free to be me”.

“There is a real feeling of home here. It is informal relaxed and family like. We always ask “How would I want my loved one to be treated?” That’s the starting point. With the Estate, you can feel the love – everyone truly does care and people have fun! Even during the pandemic, we managed to have outdoor parties and we could use the buggies to go round the beautiful gardens”. Team Member at Huntington House

Huntington House Team

There is lots more information about The Huntington and Langham Estate available on our website. https://huntingtonlangham.estate/

We love to show people around the Estate and our two wonderful homes so please do send us an Email to huntington@hlestate.co.uk or call us 01428 604600 to arrange a visit.

How do you choose the right type of Care Home?

For many people, it is not until you find yourself in the situation where, either a close relative or you need greater support with personal care, that the question “What types of care homes are available?” needs answering.

If you then find yourself overwhelmed with the multiple and varied choices you can have to receiving care and support, you are certainly not alone.

Thankfully there are several independent practical guides and resources online, which we can recommend to explain the options available and provide practical tips on choosing the right type of care.

What is the difference between a care home and a nursing home?

The AgeUK website is a good place to start your research, so you can be clear what the differences are between a care home and a nursing home and how these relate to people living with Dementia.

Age UK offer an overview of the main types of care provision and an independent view of the options available.

  • Care Homes – is the most commonly used phrase when referring to services such as ‘providing personal care, such as washing, dressing, taking medication and going to the toilet. They may also offer social activities such as day trips or outings’.
  • Nursing Homes – (or Care Homes with nursing) ‘provide personal care as well as assistance from qualified nurses. Sometimes called care homes with nursing.’
  • Care Homes with dementia care – ‘designed to make people with dementia feel comfortable and safe’
  • Nursing Homes with Dementia Care – whilst not currently covered by Age UK on their website, this is a specialist category of care for those living with Dementia that we would also include given our experience at Langham Court where we are able to offer our residents bespoke nursing care aligned to their personal needs.

 

How do I choose a Residential Care Home?

Before starting on your journey to creating a shortlist of prospective homes, we would always recommend talking to a professional, such as a GP to help establish the right approach to care needed for yourself or a loved one.

A needs assessment is, however, only part of the process to choosing the right home.   The style of home you select is a very important decision when it comes to making the move into Residential Care of any genre.

There are several national chains of Residential care providers in the UK, many offering a hotel or concierge style experience for residents at their properties.  With smaller regional chains offering their own models of care, by comparison at The Huntington and Langham Estate, as we are a family owned and run home, we are passionate that we offer just that –  a family home from home for all our residents.

Everyone’s approach to how they like to live is personal, which is why we encourage our prospective residents, along with their families to visit us and spend time familiarising themselves in our home.  Quite often it’s the moment people step through the door that they know it’s right.  Just like buying a new house, it’s the location, outlook, decoration, and layout which create those first impressions.

With so many properties and models of care available, Carehome.co.uk is a good source of information, offering a comprehensive directory of over 17,000 homes across the UK.  Their website makes it easy to search by location and type of care.   Featuring reviews and awards, also offering comprehensive details of each property and a rating for comparison.

 

What makes a good Care Home or Nursing Home?

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) are the main regulatory body of all health and social care providers the nation over.

Carrying out inspections of all properties they are a good source of information about the standard of care you should expect to receive, rating the 5 set categories of: Safe / Effective / Caring / Responsive and Well-led.

We go beyond these categories to focus on a person centred care approach, partnering with Meaningful Care Matters to provide a meaningful experience for our residents everyday allowing them to be “Free To Be Me” each and every day.  All of our team are conscious of doing the right thing “in the moment” for our residents, rather than be constrained by schedules or processes.

Adopting the Butterfly and Dragonfly approaches to care, we believe we are able to improve the quality of life and lived experiences for all in our care.

 

What are the options to fund care homes or self-funding your long term care?

3 useful links to begin your research into the funding of care are listed below.  Talking to a local solicitor or accountant can also be a good source of information as they will often be supporting others take the most effective approach to funding care.

We would also be happy to share our knowledge of options for funding for anyone considering becoming a resident at The H&L Estate.

 

We are here to help you make the right choices

Whilst choosing the right care home or nursing home can seem daunting, with lots of things to be taken into consideration, there is lots of help available and a willingness to help.  After all we are all #GladToCare.

Please do get in touch with us if you would like to visit The Huntington & Langham Estate, the kettle is always on!

What’s the difference between respite care and day care?

Whilst caregiving can be rewarding, it can also be extremely
demanding – both physically and mentally. When a loved one becomes ill, it’s
almost by instinct that we want to take care of them – but in doing so, it can
be all too easy to forget about our own health and wellbeing, particularly if
this is juggled alongside a full-time job and looking after children. Taking
time out to look after yourself, as a carer, is important for your caregiving
responsibilities, since being exhausted can prevent you from providing the best
care possible.

 

Respite and day care options can be ideal for those who both
provide and require at-home care, giving the carer a much needed break and their
loved one opportunities to interact with others whilst receiving support.

 

Respite care

Respite care options are ideal for carers who are looking to
take a short break away from their day-to-day responsibilities. Available for
1-4 weeks at a time, respite care at Huntington House and Langham Court offers
full-time care to those who need it, allowing their carers to take some time
out. Whether you’ve planned a holiday or you’re needed elsewhere at short
notice, respite care offers help in both emergency and pre-planned situations.

 

At The Huntington and Langham Estate, we realise the
importance of carers dedicating some time to boosting their own physical and
mental health. Carers can relax in the knowledge that their loved ones are
looked after in their absence, as they’re offered an exciting selection of activities,
freshly cooked meals with locally sourced ingredients and beautiful gardens. We
encourage all of our residents – no matter their length of stay – to get
involved and make new friends, whilst being as independent as possible.

 

Day care

Similarly to respite care, day care is usually given as an
opportunity for at-home carers to take some time out for themselves – a day at
a time, rather than a whole week or more. At Langham Court, we open our day
care doors twice per week, welcoming people from all walks of life who need
extra support with daily routines. Our day care service provides visitors with
opportunities to meet new people, a nutritious three course meal, refreshments
and homemade cakes. We like our visitors to feel part of a community, no matter
their length of stay.

 

Although caring for a loved one is an important
responsibility to take on, you should never feel that it has to consume your whole
life, or feel guilty for taking time out. Your health and wellbeing, as a
carer, is equally as important. To speak to a member of our team about our care
options, please click here.

Here at the Huntington & Langham Estate, age really is just a number

Many people think that care homes are just for the older generation – but they couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, if you tried to work out the average age of people who walk through our doors, you’ll probably find that it’s around 30! Let us explain…

Here at the Huntington & Langham Estate, we’re here to provide expert care for those in need of a helping hand in our homes. But one other key thing that we focus on is community. That includes sponsoring local events, supporting local businesses and building great relationships with local schools.

That’s why you’ll quite often see local children laughing, learning and playing here in our homes, and we love seeing our residents thrive when spending time with the youngest generation. Our links with local schools bring so many benefits to the people who live here, and we believe this quality time is a key part of our residents being able to lead truly fulfilling lives. In our eyes, it’s something every care home should consider if they’re not already.

We are lucky enough to have great links with fabulous schools. The children come in every week and fill the home with much laughter, along with a unique energy, spirit and openness that’s so refreshing. They don’t see wheelchairs, they don’t see dementia and they don’t see age – they simply experience fun, connections, friendships and cake!

We have had a strong relationship with St. Edmund’s School in Hindhead for over 30 years and over the past 18 months or so, we have been lucky enough to host their reception classes here in our home. Every week in term time, the school’s reception pupils come along to learn, and our residents love having them here. The class alternates between our two homes, and the children usually spend time singing, chatting with our residents, reading books and getting stuck in with arts and crafts, and we also have all sorts of fun things like dressing-up boxes and games. The teachers bring in everything needed to hold each class here, but mostly, it’s about letting the children completely be themselves in the company of our residents.

This is what Karen Bailey, Head of Early Years at St. Edmund’s School, has to say about holding classes here in our home: “The relationship between the two generations is something truly special that just happens naturally. Our visits link young and old through play, giving us a greater understanding and appreciation of another generation that we may not otherwise have regular contact with. The children cannot wait to see their friends every week.”

More recently, we have welcomed the children from PK Preschool. They visit us once a month with their parents to sing, draw, read and play games. The interaction is a delight to see and most importantly, the experience is beneficial to both young and old.

If you are connected to a local school or nursery in the Grayshott area and would like to get involved, we’re always keen to build new relationships; we believe this quality time here in our home is just as beneficial for children as it is for the people who live here, so why not get in touch? There’s nothing quite like seeing these two generations come together and it really does show that age is just a number.

Seeing the world of care through new eyes

Blindfolded role play. Perhaps not the first thing you’d associate with a care home. But it’s something that happens quite regularly here at the Huntington & Langham Estate.

A lot of our training for staff focuses on empathy, and when asked what empathy means to them, the answer is often “putting yourself in someone else’s shoes”.

This is great in principle, but not so easy in practice given that our team members have never lived in a care home, permanently lost their independence or been at the end of their life.

Role play can temporarily immerse you into a life unknown. It can create unexpected feelings and highlight aspects of life we didn’t realise we took for granted.

I once went to a ‘Dining in the Dark’ restaurant and spat out a perfectly edible salad leaf covered in dressing as it felt like I’d put a slug in my mouth. I felt an unexpected vulnerability – my mind went into a state of panic with each mouthful after that salad leaf.

The main benefit of role play is that it takes you out of your comfort zone and into a place where it’s so easy to feel as though you’re no longer in control. Whether it’s being assisted to eat, walk, dress, wash, or whatever, being the other side of the care helps staff to realise how fine the line is between enabling and disabling.

Is there too much food on the fork? Am I giving the next mouthful too soon? Have I explained what it is? If you’re helping someone to eat and not asking yourself these questions then I’d suggest it’s time to don the blindfold.

Charlie