Support & Advice
Finances can be a major problem for patients and families, due to loss of income because of the inability to work. Additional expenditure can arise from the cost of travel, disrupted routine, needing new clothes because of weight change, cost of equipment, aids or additional household appliances, special dietary requirements, child care. These can be daunting especially when there is less money coming in.
Members of the Palliative Care Team can help patients to apply for some non-means tested benefits such as Attendance Allowance or Disability Living Allowance.
Macmillan Benefit Advisers are based at both Southmead Hospital Bristol on set days. They can advise patients on whether they may be eligible for any benefits or grants. All appointments will be accessed through the central telephone line at the Citizens Advice Bureau this will be answered during the working day. A client can contact directly or be referred by a heath care professional. Contact number: 0117 9462563. Email: Macmillan@bristolcab.org.uk.
A carer is someone who regularly provides a lot of help for, or looks after a partner, relative or friend to support them in returning to and remaining at home. We recognise that caring for someone with palliative or end of life needs can be difficult. The local authority has a duty to assess the needs of carers. Find out more about carers information.
Other useful contact organisations for advice on benefits include: Find out more about
Department for work and pensions (DWP) is responsible for social security benefits. The local office is listed in the phone book under job centre plus or visit the website www.jobcentre.gov.uk. They have a benefits advice line for people with disabilities and their carers. They can also help with filling in of certain claim forms. Freephone 0800 882 200.
Macmillan Cancer Support Helpline provides practical, medical emotional and financial support. Contact: 0808 808 2020.
Macmillan also produces a booklet called ‘Help With the Cost of Cancer: a guide to benefits and financial help for people affected by cancer.
Some people may be eligible for a Macmillan grant which is a one-off payment for adults, young people or children with cancer, to cover a wide range of practical needs. This can include things such as heating bills, extra clothing, or for a much-needed break. Website. www.macmillan.org.
Age Concern provides information and fact sheets for older people on topics such as benefits, community care and housing. Information line freephone: 0800 009966. website www.ageconcern.org.uk.
Carers UK offers advice and support for carers throughout the UK, including help with benefits and finances. Carersline freephone 0808808 777
Citizens Advice - has an online guide with links about benefits for people who are sick or disabled. See phone book for nearest office. Or visit www.citizensadvice.org.uk.