Adult carers

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Guidance

Working with carers of people with mental health issues

Carers of people with mental health issues deserve support, both in relation to the people they care for, and for themselves as carers. Indeed, carers are often working long hours, in unpredictable circumstances and with little or no help, to care for those closest to them.
Area of Care: 
Mental Health
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careHospitalsMental health careHealth and wellbeingCarers servicesSocial careCommissioning
I work with: 
Adult carersParent carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
England
Date Revised: 
Thursday, May 10, 2018 - 13:45
Body: 

Carers of people with mental health problems come into contact with a range of health and social care professionals. Both in the community and in healthcare institutions, carers routinely link with psychiatrists, social workers, nurses, GPs, voluntary and charity staff, as well as many other workers.

Invaluable aid to health professionals

Carers of people with mental health issues deserve support, both in relation to the people they care for, and for themselves as carers. Indeed, carers are often working long hours, in unpredictable circumstances and with little or no help, to care for those closest to them. But in this way, carers are often an invaluable aid to health professionals' work, giving an experienced insight into the care and needs of the service user.

However, there are always challenges working with, and involving carers of people with mental health issues. Dealing with issues such as confidentiality, disputes over care and treatment, and balancing the different needs of carers and service users are common experiences for many healthcare professionals. In this sense, professionals also need support, and the necessary resources to work in partnership with carers. 

Overview of issues

An overview of the issues faced by carers has been produced by Carers Trust, as well as an outline of the key changes which we would like to see happen nationally. 

Making Respite Real in Mental Health

Carers of people with mental health problems benefit from a break from their caring role just like other carers, however, research undertaken by Carers Trust showed that many carers, service users and professionals were unaware of how to respite and carer breaks. Carers Trust has developed guidance for professionals, carers and service users to promote the value of respite, the need for it to be planned for and how to access it.

Download the leaflet  Making Respite Real in Mental Health.

The guidance is suitable for carers, professionals and service users.

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Toolkit

Triangle of Care in Wales

Carers Trust Wales and the Royal College of Nursing are delighted to have been able to explore an adaptation of the Triangle of Care to meet the needs of carers of people with dementia in acute hospitals in Wales.
Area of Care: 
Secondary CareAcute CareDementia care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health care
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carersYoung carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adults
Location: 
Wales
Date Revised: 
Wednesday, May 9, 2018 - 13:15
Body: 

The Triangle of Care, Carers Included: A Guide to Best Practice in Dementia Care, Wales Edition

Carers Trust Wales has been extremely keen to build on the success of the Triangle of Care model in England and Scotland  by advocating and supporting the implementation of the Triangle of Care standards for carers accessing services in local health boards across Wales.

Funded through the RCN Foundation, the recent development of a Triangle of Care for dementia Wales edition has been a collaborative effort between the Royal College of Nursing and Carers Trust Wales. It has been developed from the original Triangle of Care for dementia, which was co-designed with carers, people with dementia and practitioners, with the support of Uniting Carers and Dementia UK. 

Overview

According to the National Assembly for Wales Research Service, dementia is the top health concern in Wales and yet Wales has the lowest rate of diagnosis across all UK nations at just 43%. There are an estimated 45,000 people in Wales currently living with dementia and this figure is predicted to rise steadily over the next decade bringing with it dramatic financial and human impact. The cost to the Welsh economy is an estimated £1.4bn a year which includes costs to the NHS and social services, although research shows that people with dementia, carers and their families currently bear around two-thirds of the costs themselves (National Assembly for Wales Research Service, 2016).

In Wales, 50% of health boards have shown an active interest in implementing a Triangle of Care model and support is growing within other health boards throughout Wales. We hope the new Welsh edition for best practice in dementia care can lead to consistent carer involvement and support across all health and social care services irrespective of where and when a person is being treated. The partnership between Carers Trust and the Royal College of Nursing has been incredibly positive and we hope that this can be replicated across health services with nurses and carers working as partners.

Further information

For further information on the Triangle of Care in Wales contact Gill Winter, Carers Partnership Manager, Carers Trust Wales.

 

Downloads: 
PDF icon Triangle of Carer Carers Included: A Guide to Best Practice for Dementia Care, Wales editionPDF icon Triongl Gofal Cynnwys Gofalwyr: Canllaw i Arfer Gorau ar gyfer Gofal Dementia, Argraffiad Cymru
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Good Practice

Supporting Carers in Primary Care Learning Event

Carers Trust hosted the Supporting Carers in Primary Care Learning Event in November 2014. The event brought together over 100 professionals from across the sector who work to identify and support carers across primary care.
Area of Care: 
Primary Care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careMental health careHealth and wellbeingCarers servicesInformation and adviceCommissioning for carers
I work with: 
Adult carersParent carers
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
England
Date Revised: 
Friday, May 4, 2018 - 09:00
Body: 

Carers Trust hosted the Supporting Carers in Primary Care Learning Event in November 2014. This annual event was funded by the Department of Health as part of the wider Supporting Carers in Primary Care programme. 

The large scale event brought together over 100 professionals from across the sector who work to identify and support carers across primary care. 

The day provided an excellent opportunity for sharing information and good practice and the additional networking hour at the end of the day provided the ideal opportunity for delegates to reflect on what they had learnt together. The  evaluation feedback demonstrates that delegates found the day both informative and useful.

The programme

Rick Bolton, who cares for his four-year-old son led the day, sharing his account of what being a carer means to him. Delegates heard from a variety of expert speakers including Wendy Nicholson, Professional Office for School and Community Nursing at the Department of Health, Jen Kenwood, Head of Patient Experience – Community, Primary and Integrated Care at NHS England and Moira Fraser, former Interim CEO and Director of Policy at Carers Trust, as well as taking part in a selection of workshops. 

View the presentations

The event presentations will be useful for staff from carers services and other organisations who support carers in primary care.  You can also preview what was covered in the workshops. 

Supporting Carers in Primary Care Learning Event – view the presentations

 

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Supporting Carers in Primary Care Learning Event – presentations

View the presentations from the Supporting Carers in Primary Care Learning Event that Carers Trust hosted in November 2014.
Area of Care: 
Primary Care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careMental health careHealth and wellbeingCarers servicesInformation and adviceCommissioning for carers
I work with: 
Adult carersParent carers
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
England
Date Revised: 
Friday, May 4, 2018 - 09:00
Body: 

These presentations will be useful for  staff from carers services and other organisations who support carers in primary care.  You can also preview what was covered in the workshops. 

Morning plenary presentations 

Policymaking to primary care practice making it happen at the sharp end (Moira Fraser, former Interim CEO and Head of Policy, Carers Trust)

Moira Fraser explained that much needs to be done to turn the rhetoric into reality and overcome the barriers facing carers organisations working with the NHS to identify carers. 

Cosying up: how CCGs can partner carers (Dr Michael Taylor, Lead GP for Carers Services at Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale CCG)

Find out which strategies Dr Michael Taylor recommends to improve support for carers by working in partnership with CCGs.

RCGPs supporting carers in general practice programme (Dr Nazia Mohammed, Clinical Champion for Carers, RCGP)

Dr Nazia Mohammed provided an overview of the College’s work to improve carer identification and support in general practice.

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Morning workshops 

Delegates were able to choose between the following morning workshops:  

How to network effectively across the health economy to maximise support for carers (Michelle Pilling Lay, Advisor Quality & Patient Experience, East Lancashire CCG)

An overview of the current landscape in health and the opportunities to maximise the impact of the Primary Care Identification Worker.

GP audits and GP investors in carers standard accreditation (Louise Shaw, Primary Care Lead & Carer Assessment Support worker and Hazel Wright, Adult Services Manager, Northampton Carers)  

Outlines the successes and challenges of co-produced primary care Interface work over five years with specific focus on the implementation of annual audits and the launch of Northamptonshire Investors in Carers Standard accreditation.   

Developing and maintaining a carers links network in Salford (Julia Ellis, former Development Manager for Primary Care and Outreach, Carers Trust)

Provides an overview of the successful and well-established Carers Links Network in Salford. Learn how the service that provides 300 referrals per annum from the primary care sector was established, developed and maintained.

Effective monitoring and evaluation tools to assess the impact of emotional support services for carers (Clare Edwards, Carer Health Worker, West Cumbria Carers)

Explores how to effectively assess the impact of services in supporting carers’ mental wellbeing using questionnaires developed by NICE.  

We also held a workshop on young carers which was  led by Rick Bolton, Dr Nazia Mohammed and Daniel Phelps. It was agreed we all need to work together to generate a culture of change and focus on developing good long term relationships to encourage lengthy engagement. Solutions discussed included:

  • A whole family approach - ensuring young carers are identified when parents present with chronic illness for example.
  • GP awareness training - the same read code would be used for young carers as adult carers.
  • Remembering that primary care is much wider than GP surgeries.
  • NHS employees’ awareness training.
  • Continued identification through schools / colleges.
  • Identifying young carers early through health visitors and children’s centres.
  • Importance of relationships such as a long-term relationship between pharmacy staff and families.
  • Professionals having the awareness of young carers and the confidence to ask appropriate questions.
  • Important to find champions with passion to drive work forward in own establishments.

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Afternoon plenary presentations

Community pharmacy - how can it help support carers (Alastair Buxton, Head of NHS Services at PSNC) 

Describes the community pharmacy services which can support carers and the Carers Trust / Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee pilot to test carer identification in community pharmacies in England.

Supporting the health and wellbeing of carers (Wendy Nicholson, Professional Officer for School and Community Nursing at the Department of Health)

Demonstrates that community nurses are keen to extend their understanding of carers’ needs and to ensure carers’ wellbeing needs are met.

Further guidance on supporting adult carers through community nursing can be found on the Supporting adult carers through community nursing page.

NHS England commitment to carers - can it make a difference (Jen Kenwood, Head of Patient Experience – Community, Primary and Integrated Care, NHS England)

Described NHS England’s commitment to carers, which comprises 37 commitments spread across eight key priorities, from raising the profile of carers to person-centred coordinated care. 

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Afternoon workshops

Delegates were able to choose between the following afternoon workshops:

The carers health team: a methodology to prevent carers falling between the gaps in our systems (Geoff Coleman, Chief Executive, Crossroads Care South Central)

Explored using a collaborative approach to support carers involving a partnership between Crossroads Care, Carers Health Team (NHS) and Carers Support West Sussex.

Carer awareness training for pharmacies (Anne Cole, Regional Manager South West, CPPE)

A guide to the new carer-awareness training resources for pharmacy teams co-produced by the Centre For Pharmacy Postgraduate Education (CPPE) and Carers Trust to improve the identification and referral of carers and how this fits into the Carer Friendly Pharmacy Pilot.

Supporting carers through integrated care (Helen Brown, Health Development Lead Carers Resource, Harrogate) 

Evidences the value of providing support for carers by establishing a service for carers within Integrated Care Teams. It highlights the success of the service in identifying and reaching out to ‘hidden’ carers and the benefits to all the multi-disciplinary professionals involved.

Supporting carers through e-learning for community nurses (Jennie Whitford – Carers Project Manager, QNI) 

Explores the digital Carers Resource for community nurses which has been developed by The Queen's Nursing Institute in collaboration with nurses working in the community.

 

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Universities supporting students with caring responsibilities

View details of Universities in the UK who have implemented dedicated support for students with caring responsibilities.
Outcomes: 
Carer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Education
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, May 1, 2018 - 15:30
Body: 

This is a list of Universities in the UK that have implemented dedicated support for students with caring responsibilities. If you would like to contribute what your university does for students with caring responsibilities to this list, contact Carers Trust

Please note, this does not claim to be a comprehensive list of universities who have implemented specific support for carers. Furthermore, Carers Trust has not checked or vetted the support promoted here by universities.

Initiatives supporting young adult carers at universities

The University of Birmingham 

Young Adult Carers Event:  2 April 2015 

This event, hosted by the University of Birmingham, was designed for young adult carers to discover and learn about university and student life. 

University lead contact for student carers: Jane Patel - call 0121 414 8489. 

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The University of Nottingham

Outreach and taster days for young adult carers

The University of Nottingham hosts outreach and taster day activities for young adult carer groups from around the Midlands. 

Student Support for those with caring responsibilities 

The Student Support Team at the University of Nottingham has a dedicated contact for students with caring responsibilities, Carole East. Students are welcome to contact Carole directly, her contact details are: carole.east@nottingham.ac.uk or 0115 9514471.

University lead contact for student carers: Emma Szembek - call 0115 8466468 or Daisy Throup - call 0115 8467336.  

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The University of Winchester

Specific outreach to young carers and young adult carers

  • The University of Winchester runs an annual residential for young adult carers aged 14+ living in the county of Hampshire.
  • The University hosts taster days for young adult carers aged 14+.
  • The University engages in partnership work with young carers projects around Hampshire as part of its widening participation work and to support young carers with life skills and career choices.
  • The University recruits young adult carer students as Higher Education Ambassadors for the University. 
  • Visit the University young carers page.

Multi-agency partnership working for young carers and young adult carers

The University of Winchester contributes annually to the Young Carers Festival organised by The Children’s Society. 

Visit the University young adults carers page.  

Compact Scheme

The University of Winchester specifically includes in its Compact Scheme, with local colleges and sixth forms, students ‘who have caring responsibilities’ or who have ‘a disrupted pattern of education’ or who have ‘problems relating to health, disability or bereavement’, among other criteria.

Postgraduate financial support for young adult carers

The University of Winchester of Winchester has a Postgraduate Access Scholarship Scheme (PASS). The scholarship provides a 20% discount on tuition fees for a number of groups including a “carer for a family member with long-term ill-health or disability”.

University lead contact for student carers: Dr Terri Sandison - call 01962 827225 or Joanne Gale-Chambers - call 01962 624890.

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York St John University

Partnership work with York Carers Centre

York St John University works closely with York Carers Centre to support young adult carers. This includes a York Carers Centre stall at Fresher’s Fair and information stalls throughout the year.

University lead contact for student carers: Anna Herbert - call 01904 876408 or Vanesa Emslie - call 01904 876970.#

De Montford University (DMU)

DMU recognises that students with caring responsibilities may have additional support needs. It has set up a webpage of useful information and contacts for student carers and encourage any student with a caring role to contact one of the designated staff for student carers.   

University lead contacts for student carers:

  • Melissa Page, HE Guidance Officer call 0116 257 7872
  • Ryan Ward, HE Guidance Officer call 0116 257 7605
  • Email: transitions@dmu.ac.uk

 
DMU organises university experience days for student carers which involves taster sessions, campus and accommodation tours and meeting current students.
 
The university is part of local networks including those run by Leicester City Council and Barnardos. It also has five UNITE Foundation Scholarships which offer free accommodation in a Unite hall of residence for three years. Student carers are a priority group for this award.  
 
For further information please contact Melissa Page.

Sheffield Hallam University

Information about support for student carers at the university is available on its website.

Pre-entry support

The Compact scheme provides extra support to students who face barriers to progressing to university due to having caring responsibilities (amongst other circumstances). Contact the Compact team on 0114 225 4231 or email.

On course support for student carers

University lead contacts for student carers – Robin Kerr and Lynette Granger, call 0114 225 3813 or email.

  • Ring round of new student carers to check how students are settling in, resolve any issues and refer to appropriate support services. Targeted emails are also sent to raise awareness of relevant opportunities and support services.
  • Information and advice pages for student carers – dedicated pages for student carers are included on the Student Advice and Information blog. Robin and Lynette also post articles on the blog about their work with student carers.
  • One-to-one advice for student carers – Robin and Lynette are happy to see any student on a one-to-one basis to discuss their caring role, give information and advice about university life and provide supported referrals to local carer organisations
  • Partnership work with local carers’ organisations – Robin and Lynette have made close links with local carer organisations to help support student carers.
  • Staff from Sheffield Carers Centre and Sheffield Young Carers’Project have also delivered training to staff in student facing roles across the university.

Financial support for students with caring responsibilities

Students with caring responsibilities who may need extra financial support because they have higher than expected costs or they have a sudden financial emergency are eligible to make an application to the Sheffield Hallam Student Support Fund. Further information is available from Student Funding and Access Support on 0114 225 3813 or via email

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University of Manchester

For more information visit the University of Manchester student carers webpage or contact Jessica Nightingale on 0161 275 2987.

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Student Carers in Higher Education

This resource will enable universities and services supporting young adult carers to gain a greater understanding of the challenges that this group of students face and how they can be better supported to access and succeed in higher education.
Outcomes: 
Carer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Education
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Monday, April 30, 2018 - 16:15
Body: 

For a young person who has caring responsibilities, trying to transition to, through and beyond university can be extremely challenging and for some a barrier.

Carers Trust, with the support of The National Union of Students and the National Network of Universities Supporting Young Adult Carers, has published a new guide:

This resource will enable universities and services supporting young adult carers, to gain a greater understanding of the challenges that this group of students face and how they can be better supported to access and succeed in higher education.

The resource: 

  • Draws together some of the good practice universities have already begun to develop.
  • Makes recommendations for how universities can support students across the student life cycle.
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Student Carers in Further Education

Carers Trust in partnership with NIACE has published a new guide to support students with caring responsibilities in further education colleges.
Outcomes: 
Carer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Education
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Monday, April 30, 2018 - 15:30
Body: 

This new resource will enable further education colleges to gain a greater understanding of the challenges that this group of students face and how they can be better supported to remain and succeed in further education.

PDF iconSupporting Students with Caring Responsibilities: A Resource for Colleges and Services to Help Young Adult Carers Succeed in Further Education

“If I was told that I couldn’t have my phone on I would just leave college – my mum needs to be able to contact me quickly in an emergency.”
Young adult carer (taken from the Top tips for colleges and college staff supporting student carers section of the guide)

Who is the resource for?

This practical resource is designed for use by managers and staff working in further education colleges and carers services supporting young and young adult carers.

The resource: 

  • Increases awareness and understanding of young adult carers and their specific needs.
  • Outlines who young adult carers are, the challenges they face and how their caring roles can impact on their education.
  • Draws together some of the good practice that is already being developed in some colleges.
  • Makes recommendations for how student carers can be supported to sustain their participation in learning, achieve their potential and succeed.
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Toolkit

Time to Think About You

Time to Think About You is a new resource which has been co-produced with The Health Innovation Network (HIN) in South London to help carers self-identify and access support.
Area of Care: 
Primary Care
Outcomes: 
Carer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careCarers services
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carersYoung carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Monday, April 30, 2018 - 14:15
Body: 

The Health Innovation Network and Carers Trust have worked with carers on Time to Think About You.

Time to Think About You is a project to encourage carers to be more aware of their own health, and the support available to them at their local GP and carers services.

We have developed a range of materials for this project, including a poster and prompt cards.

You can help us to raise awareness among carers by sharing these, putting them up in your workspaces, and giving them out to any carers you may know. 

Download the Time to think about you materials

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Good Practice

Supporting carers of people with dementia in black, Asian and minority ethnic communities

A good practice example of working with carers of people with dementia from diverse communities by the Dementia Information and Support for Carers (DISC) service hosted by Sandwell Crossroads Birmingham
Area of Care: 
Mental HealthPhysical illnessSpecial education needsSpecialist servicesDay centreRehab CentreHospitalCare homesDementia care
Outcomes: 
Carer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careHospitalsMental health careHealth and wellbeingPharmacy ServicesCarers servicesCarers involvementCarers breaksInformation and adviceCommissioning for carersCommissioning
I work with: 
Adult carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adults
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Monday, April 30, 2018 - 13:45
Body: 

DISC Dementia information and support for carers

The Disc Service was launched 11 years ago, it is hosted by Sandwell Crossroads and funded by Sandwell and West Birmingham, Cross City, South Central CCG’s, and Birmingham City Council through the Birmingham Bettercare Fund

The service originally operated in West Birmingham, but had funding extended to cover the entire Birmingham City Council area.

The service is focused on supporting carers from the diverse communities in the Birmingham area. The DISC service prides itself on being proactive in recruiting staff from local black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities who have both the language skills and understand the cultural sensitivities.

The service supports over 400 carers and offers Iiformation, advocacy and support for carers, though one-to-one contact and successful weekly information and support groups.

It also offers a signposting and referral service into other local statutory and voluntary sector services.

Examples of the type of help and support carers have receive:

  • Accessing respite
  • Liaising with district nurses, occupational therapists and social workers.
  • Continence advice and support.
  • Advice in managing changing and unusual behaviours.
  • Finding the right care such as day centres, care homes and care agencies.
  • Talking to the wider family.
  • Advice on benefits and carers' rights.
  • Information on the Mental Capacity Act.
  • Information on lasting power of attorney

DISC's strengths

  • Building relationships with carers over a long period of time.
  • Stepping in to offer support before a crisis develops.
  • Bridging the gap between clinical diagnosis and families coping alone.
  • Making carers feel welcome – 14 of them formally volunteer in supporting other carers.
  • Being led by carers, listening to carers and developing services to meet need.
  • Feeling passionate about the service.

Further information

For more information on the service contact Jo.Moon@sandwellcrossroads.org or visit the Sandwell Crossroads website.

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Toolkit

Carers Hub: A commissioners tool for mapping local services in consultation with carers

The Carers’ Hub can be used in consultation with carers and local services as a tool to map local carer need and service provision.
Area of Care: 
Mental HealthPhysical illnessAlcohol MisuseSubstance MisuseSpecial education needsPrimary CareSecondary Care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careHospitalsMental health careHealth and wellbeingCarers servicesEmploymentSocial careEducationCommissioning
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carersYoung carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Monday, April 30, 2018 - 10:45
Body: 

The Carers’ Hub is a model of comprehensive carers support, developed by Carers Trust with assistance from the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services and funding from the Department of Health. It can be used as a resource for all those looking to commission and develop personalised services for carers.

At the centre of the Hub diagram are the outcomes of the refreshed National Carers Strategy for England. The white band represents a three-pronged approach that can be used to inform strategic planning, and the 17 spokes on the outside of the circle illustrate the complete range of interventions that every area needs in order to deliver the intended outcomes.

Using the Carers' Hub

The Carers’ Hub can be used in consultation with carers and local services as a tool to map local carer need and service provision. In order to assess what mixture of interventions might be necessary to achieve the outcomes of the National Carers’ Strategy in a local area, the first step would be to carry out consultation to establish:
  • What services are currently available.
  • Which of the National Carers’ Strategy outcomes are being met.
  • Which groups are being served.
  • What local carers and their families want.
A simple way to do this is by printing large copies of the Hub and asking carers to write comments or attach post-it notes under the interventions that are well provided locally. Then use another copy of the Hub (or different colour post-it notes) to repeat the process asking carers to indicate where there are gaps in services. 
 
You may wish to ask carers to make notes on the post-its about the quality of services and who is providing them. As a separate exercise, you may wish to ask carers to repeat the process indicating how well each of the five outcomes at the centre of the Hub are being met. Involving professionals and local service providers in the process will help to give you a complete picture of services in your area.

Local strategic planning

The Hub's three-pronged approach to local strategic planning - in the white middle band of the Hub: carer-led, identify and include and whole-area - can then be applied in order to inform the development and implementation of the most appropriate mix of interventions. 
 
Ideally, carer representatives and professionals should sit down together to analyse the messages and identify priorities, so it may be best to carry out this process at meetings (for example, of carer strategy groups or multi-disciplinary agency groups).
 
The results of the Carers’ Hub consultation process can help to inform Joint Strategic Needs Assessments, Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategies and other audit and planning processes, and maximise resources through the development of more efficient services and partnerships. The process can be repeated at a later date in order to help monitor local progress on strategy implementation.
 
Although the terminology on the Hub comes from English legislation, the rationale and process are applicable across the whole of the UK.

Further information

Download the PDF iconCarers Hub Toolkit for Commissioners (PDF, 1,241 KB).

There is also a Powerpoint version of the Hub with editable text boxes to make notes and/or compile your results.

Further details of the origins of the Hub and how to assess local services in relation to the Carers' Strategy can be found in Commissioning for Carers: an Action Guide for Decision-Makers and Commissioning Better Outcomes for Carers.

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