Making Life Better for Carers
Posted: 10 June 2020
Carers Week is an opportunity to raise awareness of the millions of unpaid carers in the UK and the challenges they face, particularly during the pandemic. Staggeringly, an additional 4.5 million people are now caring for older, disabled or seriously ill relatives or friends because of coronavirus. These unsung heroes are undertaking huge caring responsibilities looking after their relatives and friends who are disabled, ill or elderly, very often with very little support. While many feel that caring is one of the most important things they do, its challenges should not be underestimated. Caring without the right information and support can be very hard.
Help where you need it most
As a domiciliary care provider, we offer vital support to families and work alongside them to help ease some of the burden. As well as offering a well deserved break our dedicated team can also take care of the more intimate jobs such as bathing and toileting which can be more difficult to manage. The amount and type of support St Katherine’s Care can provide varies from a few hours a week, such as picking up prescriptions and preparing meals, to providing emotional or personal care day and night. We can also help with things like shopping, laundry, cleaning and cooking. Some of our customers’ families live further afield and are unable to step into the role of carer so we give them peace of mind that their loved one is being properly looked after. During the coronavirus pandemic it has been particularly tough as most of our customers are elderly and or vulnerable and are self-isolating. Our carers are the only people they see and their only connection with the outside world.
Choosing a care provider
As carers we understand the demands of the role and the huge responsibilities it entails and speaking to someone who knows what you are going through can make a big difference. During Carers Week we would like to pay tribute to the army of unsung heroes and the huge contribution they make to society and let them know we, and other providers like us, are here to help. Getting the right support is vital and requesting a carer’s assessment from your local authority is a good place to start as it will identify what help and support, including financial assistance, is available to you. Often people feel guilty asking for help but caring can be exhausting and take its toll on relationships, work and family life. And of course, self-care is just as important.
Choosing a care provider is very personal and you need to feel comfortable with whoever will be looking after your friend or relative. The Care Quality Commission monitors, inspects and regulates health and social care services and publishes its findings, including ratings to help people decide. If you are eligible for funded support, it’s important to remember that you are entitled to choose your own provider. If the cost is higher, you can pay the difference and effectively top up the amount you receive from your local authority.
Understanding what help and support is available to you can be complicated but there are plenty of organisations who offer advice and resources for free. The Carers Week website is a mine of information and of course if you’d like to find out more about St Katherine’s Care and the support we can provide please visit our website or call 01522 437949.