Working with carers of people with mental health issues

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 aid, to care for those closest to them.

Health care professional writing notes

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 aid, 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.

You can download the leaflet here: PDF iconMaking Respite Real in Mental Health

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