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User views

Background papers: children :: Child Carers :: User views

In 2012 four focus groups were held with carers from across Medway, including young carers. One of the key points raised was identification. Carers felt that there was often a delay in recognition of their role as a carer, by authorities and the carer themselves. Carers felt that GPs and hospitals were in an ideal position to recognise that they were carers and offer support and felt that the carer should be identified as soon as the person being cared for received their diagnosis.

There was felt to be a lack of training for unpaid carers in the skills they needed in their caring role, for example using a hoist. Carers also expressed that they would like more information about the condition of the person they cared for as well as clear information relating to available support. Carers felt that a single information booklet with necessary information and contact details would help greatly.

In order to keep themselves healthy, carers highlighted a need for support to take breaks from their caring responsibilities in addition to respite care, which was deemed too costly for some. In addition, counselling was mentioned as something that could be useful in helping carers maintain their mental health. Carers also expressed the desire for free travel and other treatments, such as free swimming.

Further consultation will be undertaken in the 2017 leading up to review of the carers' strategy.