Carers’ rights have been extended so that anyone who provides care and feels they might benefit from some support is entitled to a carer’s assessment by the local authority.
You, or one of your parents caring for the other could be eligible for things like help with housework, leisure memberships or even respite services.
Even if the local authority is not going to directly meet the needs that are identified by the carer’s assessment, they have to provide information and advice on where else you or the carer can get the support.
We tell you
- How to tell if you are a carer
- What you need to know about a carer’s assessment
- How to get a carer’s assessment
- What kind of help and support is available
How to tell if you’re a carer
You’re a carer if you’re looking after someone regularly because they’re ill, elderly or disabled – including family members.
Carers help with:
- washing, dressing or taking medicines
- getting out and about and travelling to doctors’ appointments
- shopping, cleaning and laundry
- paying bills and organising finances
They can also give emotional support by:
- sitting with someone to keep them company
- watching over someone if they can’t be left alone
All of these count as being a carer.
What You Need To Know about a Carer’s Assessment
Anyone who provides care and feels they might benefit from some support will be entitled to a carer’s assessment if as a result of caring for another adult:
- Their physical or mental health is at risk of deteriorating, or
- They are unable to achieve any of a list of specified outcomes (including things like maintaining family relationships or engaging in recreational activities) and this has a significant impact on their wellbeing.
How to get an Assessment?
You need to contact your parent’s social services department and request an assessment which is likely to cover the following areas:
- The caring role
- Feelings and choices about caring
- Other family commitments
- What you enjoy doing to relax
- Planning for emergencies
What help and support is available?
The support given will be means-tested by the local authority, however, the following might be available to you:
- Respite care for a holiday
- A sitting service so your parent or relative has someone with them for a while
- A day centre placement or a befriending service
- Carers training to include lifting techniques for example
- Computer and training courses to aid starting or returning to paid work
- Taxi fares to help with travel
- Gardening and housework help
You might also be interested in our section on help for carers. Have you had a carer’s assessment? Has one of your parents? Let us know how it went, and what has happened since. Visit the Age Space forum and join a conversation. The NHS has more information on Carer’s Assessments here
Also take a look at our Complete Guide to a Care Needs Assessment