Support for carers
Are you a carer or do you know someone who is?
Many of us will look after an elderly relative, sick partner or disabled family member at some point in our lives. Often people do not think of themselves as carers at all but see what they are doing as part of their role as, for example, mother, husband, wife, son or friend.
Anyone who helps with the care needs of a friend or relative who is unable to live independently without their help, without pay for their services, is a carer.
Clearly, the contribution carers make to society and supporting vulnerable people to remain at home is vital. For many, caring is a part and parcel of life, but without the right support, there can be costs to the carers own health and health and wellbeing.
Shropshire Council is committed to supporting carers in their caring role and may be able to help in a range of ways: from signposting to groups or sources of help and support in the community through to carrying out an assessment of the carers own needs (a Carers Assessment) which gives the carer a chance to discuss any help they might need to maintain their own health and balance caring with their own life, work and family.
Carers will receive an information pack which details a wide range of sources of advice and support that might be useful and a referral to Crossroads Together. Other support might include access to training, support to return to or remain in work and respite.
Carers in an emergency situation that affects their caring responsibilities are advised to contact Shropshire Council’s First Point of Contact – 03456 789044 during office hours and the Emergency Duty Team - 03456 789040 for emergencies out of office hours. Shropshire Council will use the resources we have already in place to offer appropriate support, doing everything we can to ensure people can stay safe and well at home.
However, many carers remain unaware of the sources of help and support available to them.
Often, carers are likely to be known by health services first either because of the health needs of the person they care for or their own health needs. Improving the identification and referral of carers by primary health care professional will contribute to improving the lives of carers.
What to do if you identify a person who is providing substantial care on a regular basis 'to a family member, friend or neighbour' on an unpaid basis:
Step One: Inform the person that they may be eligible for support in their caring role and an assessment of their needs (Carers Assessment). Check if they have already received a Carers Assessment. If not, carry on to step 2. If they have had a Carers Assessment, but their circumstances or the circumstances of their cared for, have changed or they have not had a yearly review go to step 2.
Step Two: Explain that they can ring the Shropshire Council First Point of Contact on 0345 678 9044 where they will be guided through sources of help and if appropriate, referred for a Carers Assessment to their area Adult Social Care Team.