Patient stories

Laura’s story – After 18 months of unsuccessful psychotherapy, Laura, 23, now has a flexible support package thanks to her personal health budget, which helps her effectively manage her mental health problems.

Victor & Jo’s story – Victor is 22, and currently lives at home with his mum and little sister. Fifteen months ago he had a psychotic episode which resulted in a hospital stay and left Victor feeling more reserved and “less enthusiastic about life”.

Lily’s story – After many years living with mental distress, a personal health budget has given Lily the chance to explore what really works to avoid the crises and hospital stays that she’s experienced in the past.

Janice’s story – As someone living with sensory, physical and mental health needs,a personal health budget has enabled Janice to consider her needs as a whole, as well as considering how her health impacts on her whole family.

Thomas and David’s story – Thomas Johnston, from Worcestershire, has profound and multiple learning disabilities. A personal health budget was used to fund 24/7 care and support for Thomas at an independent annex adjacent to his parents’ home. Thomas’s father David explains how the positive healthcare benefits for his son have been significant.

David and Martin’s story – David Jones, aged 34, has cerebral palsy with severe developmental delay and epilepsy. He lives with his parents in Dorset and is a fulltime wheelchair user. He is totally dependent for all his needs. David’s father Martin explains how a personal health budget has been beneficial because it enabled the introduction of one-to-one care workers, physiotherapy, and a tutor to help David on a choices programme.

Katie and Karen’s story – Katie MacKenzie, aged 26 and from Hull, has Rett Syndrome and is dependent on others for all daily living. A personal health budget was used to recruit specific personal assistants for Katie. This brought health and wellbeing benefits to Katie, explains her mother Karen.

Marion and Charles’ story – Charles, from Kent, is severely ill with a movement disorder. His wife (and main carer) Marion explains how a personal health budget enables them to have a few hours a week of respite care, which benefits them both.

Katy and Jackie’s story – Katy Tyler lives in Dorset with her parents. She has profound learning disabilities with complex health needs. She needs support 24 hours per day for seven days a week. Katy’s personal health budget was used to prevent her moving into permanent residential care, and to pay for person-centred care at home. Katy’s health, including psychological wellbeing, weight and vulnerability to infections, has improved dramatically, says Katy’s mother, Jackie.

Shaheena and Ishtiaq’s story – Ishtiaq Hussain, aged 59, from Manchester, suffered cerebral damage from a subarachnoid brain haemorrhage, nine years ago. A personal health budget was used to employ a rota of seven personal assistants and buy essential equipment. As a result Ishtiaq’s health wellbeing has improved significantly.

Debbie and Brian’s story – Debbie, from Doncaster, used a personal health budget to organise flexible nursing care at her home after her father, Brian, became immobile and needed 24/7 care after a series of strokes.

Anita and Trevor’s story – Trevor, 59, from Hull, explains why a personal health budget enabled his wife Anita, 56, who has the degenerative condition Huntington’s Disease, to employ carers and so provide desperately-needed support for both of them.

John’s story – John, aged 51 and from Lincolnshire, is a skilled engineer. He was left paraplegic after a motorcycle accident. John uses his personal health budget to pay for mechanical parts so he can build high-specification customised power wheelchairs for himself, to help avoid muscle spasms and to maintain his active lifestyle.

Pat’s story – Pat, 64, from Birmingham, uses her personal health budget to make significant improvements to her health and wellbeing. To manage her chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) she bought an exercise bike which she also shares with her COPD support group.

Sylvia’s story – Sylvia, 67, from Dorset, uses her personal health budget to cope with the disabling effects of a chronic central nervous system illness. The budget pays for home help and for Sylvia to pursue art and creative writing classes. As a result, Sylvia’s pain, fatigue and general mental health and wellbeing have improved markedly.

Ray’s story – Ray, 68, explains how a personal health budget helped him improve his mobility by giving him the money to join the local gym.