Letter on adult day care causes upset for users

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THE leader of Hampshire County Council has pledged to take up a woman’s case after she complained about its handling of introducing new fees for adult day care.

Vivienne Pugh, of Queens Crescent in Stubbington, cares for partner Ralph Muckells, who has Alzheimer’s.

They received a letter from the council telling them they would be charged for his use of a day care centre from August 1, but not how much.

The council says it sent 1,100 letters to service users as a courtesy, letting them know that from August 1 they had been assessed as being able to afford to pay towards the total cost of their care.

They could have to pay up to £99 a week.

Mrs Pugh said: ‘When I got the letter for Ralph I could read it and make sense of it for him, but there are a lot of people out there who don’t have anyone to fight their case for them, and they will be very confused.’

The council is now sending new letters with exact figures.

Council leader Cllr Ken Thornber, said he now realised how this first letter could cause worries.

He added: ‘Let me make this offer to this lady. If after receiving the letter she is still dissatisfied I want her to let me know personally and I will take the matter up with the director of adult social care.’

The cash-strapped council introduced means-tested contributions for adult services in a bid to raise £5.4m.

Under the new policy, those affected will pay an average of around £30 a week.