Sometimes it is not always obvious whether your relative requires additional care or not. You may need to speak to different people to get a full picture of what is needed.

On this page, you will find a checklist of questions to ask

1. Your relative
2. Yourself
3. Your relative's existing carer/agency

It is best to ask open questions that encourage detailed answers (not simply a yes or no response) as you are likely to get more useful answers, but the following suggestions can help you structure a conversation and keep in mind what you need to know.

Questions to ask your relative

  • How are you coping with personal care and housework?
  • Is there anything you struggle with?
  • Are any tasks more difficult than they used to be?
  • Do you have any difficulty washing or drying your laundry?
  • Are you able to bath/shower, shave and get dressed without difficulty?
  • Do you get any help from other family, friends or neighbours? Would a professional carer with time to dedicate to the work deal more effectively with these tasks?

Questions to ask yourself

  • When you visit their house, are there any obvious signs of things that concern you, such as piles of unopened post or an overgrown garden?
  • Does your relative generally look clean and well looked-after?
  • Is your relative dressed in clothes appropriate for the weather?
  • Do they seem to be taking the medication they need? Are medicines clearly labelled, easily accessible and in date?
  • Is there evidence that your relative is eating regular meals? Is food stored correctly?

Questions to ask your relative's existing carer/agency

  • Do they feel that the current care plan still meets your relative's requirements?
  • Can they ask carers (those that work directly with your relative) to provide feedback?
  • Do you have any particular concerns about the service being provided?
  • Are you happy with the carers?
  • Do you think that the service is meeting your relative's needs?

More information

Page last reviewed: 31 December 2015
Next review due: 31 April 2017