Information for carers
A carer is someone who, supports (not as a profession) a relative, child, friend or neighbour who could not manage without their help, due to frailty, illness, disability, mental health, addiction.
We try and provide support for carers if you or the person you care for need to use the hospitals.
Do you care for someone who is in hospital? Or are you in hospital and have someone at home who you usually care for?
Julie Howson and Lucia Urquhart are hospital Carer Support Coordinators; they are available to offer support, information and advice to help you in your caring role. Not everyone chooses to become a carer and many carers don’t see themselves as one. If you would like a chat or more information on what services are available, please contact Julie or Lucia, contact details below. They are based in the hospital three afternoons each week: Monday, Tuesday and Friday on The Daresbury ward Warrington.
If you are looking after someone who is not in hospital support is still available from WIRED Carers Centre or Halton Carers Centre, both centres support adult and young carers. Services include Emotional support, information, advice, signposting/referral service, counselling, financial advice, quarterly newsletters, training and therapies.
For more information contact:
Warrington Carers Centre – WIRED: 86 Sankey Street, Warrington, WA1 1SG Telephone: 01925 633492 or 07891 203 134
Halton Carers Centre: 62/64 Church Street, Runcorn, WA7 1LD Telephone: 01928 580182 or 07880 290 310
Who are carers?
Anyone can become a carer. Carers come from all walks of life, all cultures and can be of any age. If you are a carer, you probably feel that you are doing what anyone else would in the same situation; looking after your mother, son, or best friend and just getting on with it.
The position of carer is not one that many apply for. Yet anyone can find themselves unexpectedly in this position – more than three in five of us will at some point find ourselves in such a role. In fact there are around six million carers in the UK who provide unpaid care and support to ill, frail or disabled friends or family members. Many carers are hidden, including very young people who care for parents and siblings.
Carers of patients at the hospital
We appreciate that families, friends and neighbours have an important role in meeting the care needs of many patients, both before admission to hospital and following discharge. We want to promote the health and independence of carers, by involving them during the patient’s stay in hospital, and planning his or her discharge home.
If you are a carer and have to come into hospital it is important that you make hospital staff aware of your caring responsibilities. They will explain where you can go to receive appropriate advice and support.
Carers of people with learning disabilities
The number of people with learning disabilities over the age of sixty is rising, and the numbers of these adults requiring health care for acute and chronic conditions will rise correspondingly.
The White Paper Valuing People: a new strategy for learning disability for the 21st Century (2001) identifies the need “to enable people with learning disabilities to have access to health services designed around their individual needs with fast and convenient care delivered to a consistently high standard and with additional support where necessary.”
At Warrington and Halton Hospitals, we are committed to ensuring equal health care for people with learning disabilities. This includes ensuring that you, as a carer, have the information and support to enable you to participate in making the best decisions for the person you care for.
While the nursing team is competent to provide all care, there may be aspects of the delivery of this care that are difficult, such as anxiety, unfamiliarity, communication problems etc. The ward nurses will work closely with you, family members and friends - as well as the learning disabilities team - to plan and deliver the best care.
What can you do?
There are several things that we actively encourage carers to do:
If the person you care for is admitted to hospital, it is important that they bring a health passport (if they have one) and that you work with staff to identify the care needs of the patient
We actively encourage you to request updates from the ward team
Give us feedback as you will know the patient and their specific needs better
Ask for the names of the nurses who are looking after the person you care for so you have a point of contact
If, for any reason, you feel that your views are not being heard or involved you can ask to see the ward manager or the departmental matron. If you feel you need further support and advice you can contact our PALS team. You can read more about PALS here.
Strategies for relatives caring for someone with Dementia (START)
If you are caring for a family member or friend who has been diagnosed with dementia Halton Carers Centre we deliver an 8 week training course in our Runcorn office.
The course will look at some of the behaviours associated with dementia, the trigger or cause of these behaviours and strategies to help manage these behaviours.
Each session will last for 1 hour and the weekly sessions are as follows
Stress and Wellbeing
Reasons for behaviour
Making a behaviour plan
Behaviour strategies and unhelpful thoughts
Planning for the future
Introduction to pleasant events and your mood
Using your skills in the future
We will be running this course throughout the year with daytime, evening and weekend courses available.
Please contact the office on 01928 580182 if you would like to find out more about the course and to book your place.
Further information and contacts
There are many resources available for carers of people that are available for you to access.
Warrington Disability Partnership - Warrington Disability Partnership (WDP) is an internationally acclaimed user led charity. With over 24 years’ experience of developing and delivering mobility and independent living services, our aim is to support disabled people and people living with long term health conditions.
Warrington Disability Partnership also provide Carer support.
http://www.disabilitypartnership.org.uk long term health conditions.
Warrington Disability Partnership
Centre for Independent Living
Carers’ Centres - Provide a wide range of support, information and advice locally to carers with centres based in both Halton and Warrington.
- Halton: 01928 580182
- Warrington: 01925 644212
Carers’ Helpline - Call the Carers Direct helpline if you need help with your caring role and want to talk to someone about what options are available to you.
- Tel: 0300 123 105
Carers UK - A UK charity set up to help the millions of people who look after an older, disabled or seriously ill family member or friend. They run an advice line for information.
- Tel: 0808 8087777
- Web: www.carersuk.org
Caring with Confidence - A scheme that improves support for carers aged 18 years and over. By participating in free local group sessions, carers can develop caring knowledge and skills. Available at the Carers’ Centres. Travel and alternative care costs are available to help people to attend.
- Tel: 0800 073 3871
Hospital Chaplains - Our chaplaincy service can also offer a wide range of advice on spiritual matters. They have access to representatives of most major religions
- Tel. 01925 662146
Independent Living Centre - Free impartial advice and information about specialised equipment that can improve your quality of life.
- Halton: 01928 582921
- Warrington: 01925 240064