Someone may have been a carer for some time or have started caring more recently. Either way it is likely that they are caring out of love, friendship or duty. This does not mean it will always be easy emotionally or physically. Also, as a carer, they may well have needs of thier own.
Who is a carer?
Many carers do not recognise themselves as carers. A carer is anyone who provides or intends to provide practical or emotional support to a relative, friend or neighbour who is ill or disabled. The help they provide is unpaid.
Carers who provide (or intend to provide) a substantial amount of care on a regular basis can ask for an assessment. The Carers (Equal Opportunities) Act 2004 extended the scope of carers assessments to include consideration of carer’s work, education, training or leisure interests. Everyone is entitled to request information and advice but to get help and support from Adult Social Care, the person you care for must be eligible to receive services from us.
To help us understand about your role as a carer we will complete an assessment with you
A carers assessment is simply a discussion with you that will help us understand the physical, emotional and practical impact that caring has on your life and to ensure that your needs are taken into account. This can be carried out at the same time as the assessment of the person you care for, or can be done separately and privately.
The best way to support you as a carer may be to provide some extra or different community care to the person you care for. Having a carers assessment can help you decide which parts of the caring role you are able to provide, and which parts need outside assistance. Everyone needs a change occasionally and to have some time for themselves. This is especially so for carers and even more so if the person being cared for cannot be left alone.
A carers break is some extra help given to the person you care for to allow you to have time off. Breaks from caring:
- are not an admission of failure or saying you don’t care
- are a sensible thing to do if you want to carry on caring
- may prevent you becoming exhausted or unwell
- can give the person you care for a break as well
- will help you and the person for whom you care plan for times when you might be unable to care.
There are many ways in which a break can be arranged or provided.
How is the care arranged?
Adult social care have a duty to assess the cared for person. Having done this they will then decide if the person is eligible for help and if the service needed can be provided locally. There is a charge for services which are provided for the cared for person. However, the carers savings and income are not taken into account when the person care for is assessed for charging purposes.
There are several types and ways in which help is available:
- extra or changed home care
- attendance at Park House for day care
- residential/nursing home break
- help to arrange for the person you care for to stay with another relative or friend
- emotional support
- benefits advice
The type of care needed for the cared for person will be discussed with the person carrying out the assessment. It should fit in with your Lifestyle and the person you care for and give you flexibility and choice.
For more information and advise or to request an assessment contact the Adult Social Care team on 01720 424000.