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What’s it like being a carer?

Conversations that the Healthwatch Network has had with the public, as well as research and data we’ve gathered, shows that carers don’t always get the support they need.

They have difficulty accessing the assessments to which they are entitled and councils often don’t have the systems in place to understand the number of carers in their area, or the support they require.

As we approach the publication of the government’s Social Care Green Paper, it’s vital that carers’ needs are considered a priority.

Our new briefing published today brings together the views and experiences of 5,447 carers from over 27 communities across England.

Key findings

Our research suggests that:

  • Carers are not always aware of their rights to an assessment and information and advice.
  • Carers only start looking for help when they reach a ‘crisis’ point. Any delay in accessing support at this point has an adverse effect on their health and wellbeing.  
  • Carers have to wait an average of 57 days for services once they request support. This, in and of itself, is not an overly long wait, the problem is that people are only requesting support when they have already reached crisis. 
  • Many councils (48%) do not know how many carers are in their area, very few councils (30 or 23%) were able to say how long carers were waiting for services. 

Read the full Healthwatch England briefing here 

 

 

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Copy from Healthwatch England