If you care for or support someone with a disability or health problems, you are a carer and you are entitled to an assessment of your own needs, even if the person you care for does not want, need or receive support services themselves.
Caring of any sort can affect your own wellbeing and health. To continue looking after someone else means that you need to feel supported too. This support can mean knowing who you can call in an emergency if, for example, you are taken ill. It might mean that you can take a much-needed break or get extra support for the person you care for.
The type of care or support you provide to someone can include anything from washing and dressing, to supporting someone with anxiety or depression. However, these are just examples and we understand that everyone's circumstances are different.
Before your assessment
Before you contact us, think about the following things in preparation for your assessment:
- what your caring role entails
- your health
- your feelings and choices about caring
- your ability to work, study and relax
- planning for emergencies.
The person you care for doesn't need to be involved in your assessment, unless you want them to be.
Get caring support
BANES Carers' Centre
The BANES Carers' Centre is the best place to start for support in your caring role. They offer free support to help you to keep well, stay connected to others, juggle work and caring responsibilities and navigate through the health and social care system. Contact the BANES Carers' Centre for more information, or to register with them. They can also tell you if you would benefit from having a carer's assessment.
Carer's assessment from us
To get a carer's assessment from us, call our partner, Virgin Care (who provide our adult social care services), on 0300 2470201 and select option 2 (weekdays, 8.30am to 5pm, except Fridays when we're closed from 4.30pm).
If the person you care for or support already receives social care or health support, contact the person or team who arrange it directly.
After your assessment, we may offer you one or more types of support. Your wishes and preferences will be at the heart of your assessment and in the type of support you are offered. It is vital that the support suits you and your family, and this may include one or more of the following:
- Support for the person you look after
- Respite support
- Equipment and advice
- A personal budget