This means if you are a carer you can have a carer’s assessment regardless of the amount or type of care you provide, your financial circumstances or your level of need for support.
You can have an assessment whether or not the person you care for has had an assessment of their needs. Even if they are not eligible for support you can still have an assessment.
If you and the person you care for agree, a joint assessment of both your needs can be undertaken at the same time.
How a carer's assessment can help you
A carer’s assessment is to find out about your needs and how we may be able to help. It can help us to understand the best way to support you to maintain your own health and wellbeing. Our aim is to help you to find a balance between caring for someone else and looking after yourself.
Your assessment is an opportunity to:
- recognise your role as a carer
- talk and reflect on your own needs as a carer
- share your experience of caring
- identify what networks, local community services and charities may be able to support you
An assessment will look at ways in which we can best help you in your caring role. It is not about your ability to care.
Preparing for an assessment
Before the assessment, take the time to sit down and think about your role as a carer and the impact it has on you. It may help to keep a diary for a week or so with details of the care you provide. You could also talk things through with family and friends.
Make some notes in advance of the meeting/telephone call. Think about how your role as a carer affects:
- your physical health (e.g. back aches from moving or transferring someone, finding time to attend medical appointments)
- your emotional wellbeing (e.g. feeling stressed or anxious, not sleeping well)
- your daily life (e.g. housework, shopping, managing paperwork)
- your personal care (e.g. time to maintain your own personal care, going to the dentist or hairdresser)
- your nutrition (Do you find time to shop and prepare meal for yourself and your family?)
- your social life (What did you do before you were a carer that you cannot do now? What would you like to do?)
- your personal relationships (with family members and friends)
- your ability to look after a child (this includes parenting, grandparenting and foster caring)
- your environment (Do you live with the person you care for? Is the property suitable for your or their needs? Are you near to shops or community resources?)
- your work or volunteering (Managing and maintaining any work or volunteering role that you have now or might like to have in the future)
- your education or training (Do you need support to access training or education?)
Before we visit/call
Please let your assessor know if:
- you need an interpreter (e.g. British Sign Language interpreter or English is not your first language)
- you need an independent advocate to assist you with the assessment.
(Your assessor can arrange for you to have an independent advocate to help you at the assessment if you do not have a friend or family member who is able to help you).
What happens after the assessment
If you do not meet the eligibility criteria set by the Government for services provided by the Council, there are still a number of support options that can be accessed. Your assessor will talk to you about these and advise you where to find information and advice.
If the outcome of your assessment is that you are eligible to receive services, we will work with you to develop your own support plan (Carer's Personal Plan). The plan will need to be agreed between you and the assessor. It will outline any outcomes and actions that were recorded in your assessment. It will also show if you are due to have any services in place and a schedule of when you will receive the service.
Your needs could be met by a range of options, including resources available in your community and services provided by the voluntary sector.
Support and services provided directly to you, as a carer, are not chargeable and you will not need a financial assessment. Services that may benefit you as a carer but which are provided directly to the person you care for, as part of their own support plan (eg respite stays), are chargeable.