Two ladies chatting Birchwood House

All about the respite care experience at Birchwood House

At Birchwood House, if circumstances mean an elderly person needs short-term care in a safe, welcoming environment, we offer them respite care. We chatted to our manager, Claire Davis, and deputy manager, Claire Tye, to ask all about the respite care experience at Birchwood House. 

When do people or their families tend to seek respite care at Birchwood House? 

“People come to us for a number of reasons. It could be that someone’s been discharged from hospital but are still not feeling well enough to go home or live alone. Maybe they’re not back to where they were before or need some TLC.  

“Or it could be that their regular carers are going on holiday or need a break for a period of time. In which case, we would offer respite care.” – Claire Davis

How do people tend to feel about seeking respite care? 

“People are generally keen for reassurance, and that’s why we’re always happy to show people around Birchwood House and answer their questions. For both families and respite care residents there may be a lot of questions about daily life at Birchwood House, especially if it’s the first time someone’s left their own home. That’s natural and we can talk through everything in detail.” – Claire Davis 

“We’re also lucky enough to be recommended by other families and when that happens, people are generally positive about respite care, as a personal recommendation alleviates any uncertainty.” – Claire Tye

“Birchwood House is designed to be a home-from-home and so everyone should do exactly what they would in their own home.”

Claire Tye, deputy manager

Claire Davis and Claire Tye Birchwood House
Claire Davis, manager, and Claire Tye, deputy manager at Birchwood House

How can you help with new respite care residents settling in? 

“It’s the Birchwood House’s team’s job to make everyone who stays with us feel at ease and give them confidence. We are on hand to make sure they’re well looked after and taken care of. We will also allow them as much choice as possible, such as over when they would like to join in with activities and when they would prefer not to. Everyone’s different so we are flexible around people’s needs.” – Claire Davis  

Do people always visit before taking respite care? 

“We’d really encourage people and their family members to visit beforehand – you can get a good feel for Birchwood House the moment you set foot inside. We’re always happy to arrange tours of our home and we also have open days during the year.” – Claire Tye

“If you can’t get to see us, you can also have a look at some of the videos on our website, including our tour video (below) and download our respite care brochure, or give us a call to ask questions.” – Claire Davis

Birchwood House Virtual Tour

Do you offer immediate or emergency respite care? 

“Absolutely – we are usually able to take emergency respite care residents at Birchwood House but it’s always best to give us a quick call to check.” – Claire Tye 

How quickly can you arrange emergency care? 

“Respite care can be arranged quickly – some people join us in a matter of days.” – Claire Tye

What if a loved one needed medical care whilst on a respite care stay? 

“This is a common question but it’s no problem – we always temporarily register every respite care resident with our local surgery on arrival.” – Claire Davis

Do respite care residents get a choice on what they do? 

“Certainly. We’re very much guided by what our residents want to do each day. There’s no set time to get up in the morning and although we have a range of activities on offer, if people would prefer to stay in their room at any stage that’s absolutely fine.” – Claire Davis

“Birchwood House is designed to be a home-from-home and so everyone should do exactly what they would in their own home.” – Claire Tye

“Respite care is not as daunting as some people may think. We create a warm and friendly atmosphere where residents are happy and have a choice over what they do.”

Claire Davis, manager

What would a typical day look like for a respite care resident? 

“Daily choice is really important for all our residents. With three lounges and a beautiful conservatory, there’s plenty of space to choose where to spend your time. We offer three meals a day, snacks and tea. We have a range of different activities suitable for all ages and abilities and we will always help residents to enjoy the garden in the right weather.” – Claire Davis

Is there a minimum or maximum stay? 

“Respite care stays start from two weeks but can continue for as long as is suitable for each individual. Some of our residents regularly come for respite care. There’s no maximum term.” – Claire Tye

What would you say to people considering respite care at Birchwood House? 

“Please come and see us. As a family-owned business in a beautiful setting you can see what we offer at Birchwood House and meet our team. We’re often told it’s the feeling you have when you walk through our door that tells you Birchwood House is the right environment.” – Claire Tye

“I’d add that respite care is not as daunting as some people may think. We do our best to create a warm and friendly atmosphere where residents are happy and have a choice over what they do, and we have a good range of reviews from residents and their families that will tell you more.” – Claire Davis

For more information, have a look at our respite care brochure, or our frequently asked questions.

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