Caring can have a significant impact on health, with the pressures of providing care taking a toll on both carers’ physical and mental wellbeing. Those providing round the clock care are more than twice as likely to be in bad health as non-carers.
Following the Harnessing the Power of Communities event in November 2017, feedback taken from this event was that the carers work stream should stand as its own programme and this has been adopted. Since then, the Unpaid Carers Programme has come into operation and a working strategy has been developed to help achieve the following:
- Identify hidden carers – those who don’t see themselves in a caring role
- Heighten the awareness and profile of West Yorkshire and Harrogate carers
- A commitment from all Partners to support the physical and mental wellbeing of carers, whilst involving them as key partners in the design, planning and delivery of care
- Improve carer identification and support across the whole health care system
- Seamless, joined up care for carers
- Identified what support is available in our six places so we can identify any inequalities
What is planned going forward:
- Pulled together previous carer engagement and hosted engagement events on Quality outcomes for carers in primary care,
- Developing a plan to improve the outcomes of all carers within West Yorkshire and Harrogate add link to the latest version of the strategy
- Developing an evidenced based case for change which underpins the reason for our plan and builds on existing good practice within the Partnership
- Developing resources to support employers within the partnership to support working carers
- Rolling out events to support young carers to achieve career aspirations
Achievements so far:
- Engaged with primary care clinicians so GP practices across the area identify and signpost carers to information and advice services
- Worked with six places to engage with primary care and GP’s to recognise carers and increase registration of carers
- In Calderdale carer registration has increased by 150%
- In Wakefield Connecting Care Hubs made up of multi-disciplinary teams from across health, social care and community organisations. This is considered as part of the whole family approach and are referred/signposted to the local carers service as part of joined up care
- OSCAR (online support and clinical advice resource) pathways have been developed in Wakefield to provide free confidential information and support services to adults and young adult carers living in Wakefield.
- In Leeds there is a toolkit for identifying and recording carers in their patient records, and for making a referral to Carers Leeds – using the ‘yellow card’. 100% of GP surgeries across Leeds have endorsed this way of supporting carers.
- In Kirklees there are schemes to identify Carer Champions in GP practices to support carers in the GP practices. There is also a card scheme to refer carers to other care providers for advice and support.
- Carers’ Resource (Bradford and Airedale; Harrogate and Ripon, and Craven Districts of Yorkshire have a GP template referral process
- Funding has been secured to host events across West Yorkshire and Harrogate to encourage young carers to aspire to health and social care vocations. Hoping to host three events across six local places in partnership with local NHS employers and councils
- All 12 trusts across the Partnership support the ‘John’s Campaign’. This helps carers of people living with dementia to remain in hospital with their loved one, as a parent would with their child
- Agreed to adopt and will shortly be implementing the working carers passport across West Yorkshire and Harrogate which will benefit approximately affect 43,000 employees this figure does not include the employees in the Mental Health trusts who will also be part of the implementation too
- Highly commended in a prestigious Health Service Journal (HSJ) award in the System Led Support for Carers category on Wednesday 21 November.
As part of the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health & Care Partnership Unpaid Carer Programme, you are invited to the first Carer-VCS meeting to be updated on the work undertaken so far, and opportunities to get involved and help support the recognised programme work streams to achieve common goals across the carer spectrum. This group will influence the programme steering group ensuring that issues are addressed and help to facilitate solutions.
If you are interested please email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the Project Manager: Ashfaq.Ahmed2@wakefieldccg.nhs.uk