There are more than 89,000 people looking after a loved one – a member of their family or a friend – without payment, who are playing a vital role in our communities.
Dr Su Stone, clinical chair, NHS Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Across the NHS we absolutely value the incredible work that carers do to look after, and care for, their loved ones.
“Caring comes naturally and it is what we do when a loved one needs help, but without support and care for the carer, as well as the person being cared for, the impact on the carer’s own health and wellbeing can be significant.”
Carers Week, which began on Monday, is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK.
This year, Carers Week is looking at how carers can be supported to stay healthy and connected; building communities which support carers to look after their loved ones well, while recognising that they are individuals with health and wellbeing needs of their own.
There are different types of help and support available to carers. Once you are registered as a carer with your GP, access and referral to schemes and local services becomes much more straightforward.
More than 30 events are taking place across West Sussex this Carers Week to raise awareness of the support available for carers locally.
Events include relaxing walks, picnics and coffee mornings; information stands are also at many hospitals across the county to provide help and guidance for carers.
Dr Stone said: “Everyone who cares for someone has such a vital role and we want to make sure that carers are all supported and cared for.
“It’s important to remember that the best way to support the person that you’re caring for is to stay fit and healthy. Your GP can give you expert advice on how you can stay well and help to connect you to other useful carer support services and sources of information.
“If you are a carer and you aren’t currently receiving local support please visit an event this week, speak to your GP or call Carers Support West Sussex to find out more.”
Find out more about Carers Week and events taking place at www.carerssupport.org.uk/carersweek
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