New service to support the 80,000 carers in West Sussex

Carers living in West Sussex who look after family or friends who are ill or frail will have access to a new service to help them improve their own health and wellbeing.

There are an estimated six million unpaid carers in the UK and 80,000 are based in West Sussex. Carers provide essential care and support for some of the most vulnerable people in our communities.

A Carers’ Health Team visits carers and checks their general state of health and wellbeing.

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Wilma Thomas, Carers’ Health Team manager at Sussex Community NHS Trust, said: “Caring is a hugely important role that many people take on every day.

“Carers don’t receive training and much of their daily routine is focused on the person they care for, rather than themselves.

“Many carers report a decline in health since becoming a carer and some might not even have time to visit their GP for a check-up.

“Our new service means we can support carers in their own home and give them practical advice and support about everything from safe moving and handling techniques to managing medication and eating healthily. Long-term we hope this support will also benefit the person being cared for.”

Peter Catchpole, West Sussex County Council’s Cabinet member for Adult Social Care and Health, said: “In West Sussex, the most recent figures estimate there are 84,000 unpaid carers, saving West Sussex an estimated £1 billion a year.”

This new service, available to all carers aged over 18 across West Sussex, is staffed by trained health professionals who work closely with other NHS specialist services and ensure health screening and where appropriate access to NHS health checks are available for all.

See the Carers’ Health Team page at: