A carer is someone who provides unpaid help and support to another person, usually a relative or friend, in their day-to-day life. If this is you, or someone that you know, then there is support available.
Caring, whilst very rewarding, can also have an impact on the carer’s own health or wellbeing. Advocates in the Wirral Advocacy Hub at n|compass provide a service that works with Carers who are over the age of 18, and who are caring for another adult. Advocates can support with:
- Understanding your rights as a Carer.
- Help and support in understanding health and social care processes as a Carer
- Understanding and accessing a social care assessment as a Carer.
- Raising concerns or making complaints about health and social care services.
- Other health or social care issues that may arise as a result of the caring role e.g. respite.
If you think you may benefit from advocacy support please contact the Duty Advocates for more information on 0300 200 0083 or email us at [email protected] You can also check out the n|compass website at https://www.n-compass.org.uk/ were they have further information that may help you or the person you care for.
How advocacy helped Dennis who was a Carer for his wife Sandra
Sandra lived at home with her husband Dennis but due to the advancement of her dementia Dennis was struggling to provide all the care that Sandra needed. Dennis felt Social Services weren’t listening to him and contacted the Wirral Advocacy Hub for support. Dennis and his advocate contacted Sandra’s social worker and asked for a review of Sandra’s social care assessment under the Care Act and a full Carer’s assessment for Dennis. Dennis felt he was too emotional and tired to support Sandra through the process, so Sandra was able to receive support from her own independent advocate.
Sandra agreed to go into residential care for a period of respite to give Dennis a break while the assessments where completed. It soon became apparent that the dementia was causing Sandra’s behaviour to be challenging to the extent that she required a level of care that couldn’t be provided at home.
Dennis was very upset about events leading up to where things were now. He was confused about the process, what Sandra’s care needs were and the classification of nursing homes and although he had been to view several, and a couple had been to assess Sandra, no suitable placement had yet been found. Dennis’s advocate helped him to understand the process and explained the urgent need to focus on getting Sandra to a suitable place as it was not in her best interests to remain in respite for any length of time and he was unable to visit regularly. The advocate supported Dennis to view a home that had beds available in an all-female unit as this was Sandra’s preference. The home was also close to where Dennis lives so he would be able to visit as often as he pleased and had a garden she could access from her room.
After visiting the home Dennis agreed it would be suitable for Sandra and, with help from his advocate, arranged for them to assess Sandra. It was important to Dennis that he made the arrangements and stayed in control of the process which he was supported to do. Sandra moved from respite into her new home and has settled well with her personal belongings around her provided by Dennis. Dennis visit’s her daily and they enjoy lunch together and an afternoon movie, they can be found regularly sitting in the garden together in good weather. Dennis says he is very happy spending quality time with Sandra.