Life & Living

Ask Angela

Ask Angela – July 23

Angela Gifford

Angela Gifford

Managing Director of
Able Community Care

01603 764567 

Able Community Care has been in the same family for nearly four decades and now provides live-in care services throughout the UK. Since 1980 we have provided care and have met with thousands of families who are seeking an alternative to moving into a residential care home. Meeting people inevitably leads, either at the time of an assessment or even years later, to questions for which people are looking for answers.

Information around all aspects of care is available but the road to finding out, especially at a time of crisis, about specific factors can be difficult and stressful. Able Community Care receives calls and emails on a regular basis with people asking if we can help with their search for information.

Recently these questions have been asked of us…

Angela Gifford, Managing Director of Able Community Care answers your questions…

Question: A friend mentioned she is on the Priority Services Register and said I could apply. What exactly is it please?

Answer: The Priority Services Register is a free support service that makes sure extra help is available to people in vulnerable situations with reference to your energy and water supply.

There is an eligibility criterion which includes: you are disabled, have a sight or hearing condition, need to use medical equipment, are of state pension age, plus more.

Included in the benefits for registering are: advanced notice of scheduled power cuts, priority support in an emergency, identification and password scheme, the ability to nominate someone to receive bills/communications on your behalf, regular meter readings and more.

For further details about the PSR visit the website:

To register for the Scheme, contact your energy supplier or network operator.

Question: What is the postal service Articles for the Blind?

Answer: Royal Mail operate a scheme called Articles for the Blind (AFB) which allows blind and partially sighted people to send certain items of post free of charge. If you are blind or partially sighted and have close-up vision with spectacles of N12 or less, then you can use the scheme. You may only send items that have been specially produced or adapted for blind and partially sighted people.

You can send amongst other items:-books, papers and letters – either embossed or in large print, computer disks and CDs which have been prepared for blind or partially sighted people, spoken audio, video (with added commentary – audio description) and electronic media, talking books and talking newspapers, electronic and optical magnifiers, games, mathematical devices, watches, clocks and measuring equipment, mobility aids (including sticks) and guide dog equipment.

For further details call your  local sorting office or the Royal Mail Customers Service Department on 0345 607 6140.

Question: I am applying for a care assessment from Social Services and believe I can ask for a Personal Budget if my assessment confirms I need care and I am also eligible for funding. Practically, how does a Personal Budget work?

Answer: If you are granted a Personal Budget it can be managed in the following ways:

You can ask the council to either:

Manage your Personal Budget for you.

• Pay the money to another organisation – such as a care provider.

• Pay the money directly to you or someone you choose – this is known as a Direct Payment.

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