If you look after someone of any age and provide unpaid support to family or friends who could not manage without your help, then you are a carer. This could be caring for a relative, partner or friend who is ill, frail, disabled or has mental health or substance misuse problems.
Anyone can become a carer. Carers come from all walks of life, all cultures and can be of any age. If you are a carer, you probably feel that you are doing what anyone else would in the same situation; looking after your mother, son, or best friend and just getting on with it.
The position of ‘carer’ is not one that many apply for. Yet anyone can find themselves unexpectedly in this position – more than three in five of us will at some point find ourselves in such a role. In fact there are around six million carers in the UK who provide unpaid care and support to ill, frail or disabled friends or family members. Many carers are hidden, including very young people who care for parents and siblings.
Our commitment to you
We understand that families, friends and neighbours have an important role in meeting the care needs of many patients, both before admission to hospital and following discharge. We want to promote the health and independence of carers, by involving them during the patient’s stay in hospital, and planning his or her discharge home. We have developed a strategy which demonstrates our commitment to supporting the needs of carers. We have carer representatives who sit on several of our groups/ committees in the Trust. These groups/ committees inform decisions made at a strategic level.
If you are a carer and have to come into hospital it is important that you make hospital staff aware of your caring responsibilities. They will explain where carers can go to receive appropriate advice and support.
If you are the MAIN Carer for your relative or friend you may be eligible for a Carers Passport while they are a patient in our hospital. During your relative/ friends stay you may wish to help with aspects of their care. This may include;
Physical care i.e. personal hygiene including mouth care, help with dressing, help with eating
Emotional/ psychological care i.e. giving reassurance, orientating to time and place, explaining planned care and treatments
Social Support i.e. reading to them , helping them with communication
To acknowledge your help and support the Carers Passport gives you access to the following;
access to drinks while on ward
access to toilet and washing facilities on ward
access to appropriate car parking concessions
access to your relative /friend outside of normal visiting hours
Please talk to the ward staff if you would like to know more about the Carers Passport.
To help carers find out what support is available to them and the person they care for, both during and after a hospital admission, GHNHSFT is working in partnership with Carers Gloucestershire to offer help and information.
Information regarding the hospital and social care processes including discharge practice and what help is available once the person has been discharged from hospital can be accessed on various wards across the two hospital sites.
The Carers Gloucestershire Hospital Liaison Officer, Louise de Lloyd works on stroke and General Old Age Medicine wards at both sites on a full time basis. Staff identify carers of the patient or if the patient themselves is a carer. Louise can then talk directly to carers on the ward but if they are not visiting then an information pack is sent out so no one misses out! A pull up banner is put up outside the ward to alert Carers that the Hospital Liaison Officer is on the ward and is available to talk to any carers who need information regarding their caring role.
A Carers Information and advice point is held in the Atrium at GRH on the 2nd Monday of the month from 9.30-3pm, Oncology CGH, 4th Thursday of the month 9-2pm and West Wing out patients in CGH 3rd Thursday of the month 10-3pm.
For further details of this service, speak to the Hospital Liaison Officer, Louise de Lloyd or to contact Carers Gloucestershire direct call 0300 111 9000 or the ward staff. If you feel your voice is not being heard, please contact The Patient Advise and liaison service (PALS).
We have PALS offices at both Cheltenham General Hospital and Gloucestershire Royal Hospital.
Gloucestershire Royal Hospital on the ground floor Tower block entrance opposite the General Office. Open 9 - 5pm Monday to Friday.
Cheltenham Hospital on the ground floor on Sandford Road entrance by the Blue Spa restaurant. Open 10 – 3 Monday to Friday
Telephone: 0800 019 3282 (Free phone)
For practical information for carers about attending hospital please read our patient information leaflet.
Do you help care for and/or take on responsibilities at home for someone in your family who is disabled or has been ill for a long time? This may be your Mum, Dad, Brother, Sister or another member of your family. If you do then you are a young carer. It is estimated there are more than 7,000 young carers in Gloucestershire between the ages of 5 and 24.
Read our Handbook for young carers
If the person you care for comes into hospital it can be a very worrying time. Please let the hospital team looking after your family member know that you are a young carer. We can then make sure that we put things in place to help. All young carers are entitled to a carers assessment. This assessment will look at your caring responsibilities, the effects this may be having on you and if you need any extra help.
Some of the things that other young carers have said would help them when someone is in hospital include;
Being given information about any medications that your family member may need to take when they get home
Having a named contact in the hospital who knows about you
That hospital staff understand that you are one of the people who know most about your family members care
Being included in conversations about your family members discharge home
Explaining medical information in ways that you can understand
The PALS offices at Gloucestershire Royal and Cheltenham General Hospitals have a Young Carers Resource file which you may find helpful. You will also find information in the file about Gloucestershire Young Carers (GYC). More information can be found here
We have signed up to the John's Campaign which campaigns for carers to be able to stay ovenight with their loved one while they are in hospital. You can read more about our pledge to support John's Campaign here.
Patients with learning disabilities
If you are a person with a learning disability or a carer of a person with a learning disability please bring in your completed Hosptial Traffic Light Assessment
We are the Learning Disability Liaison Nurses for GHNHSFT.
We are able to offer support around identifying and implementing reasonable adjustments for people with learning disabilities accessing the hospital.
We can visit the person at home to assess needs when planning for an admission, provide advice and support to relatives and carers. We will support people in outpatients as required.
Please contact Bev Farrar or Carol Forbes on 0300 422 4953/4985 Mon-Fri 9-5
We are happy for you to leave us a message, your name and contact details.
Patients with dementia
We have a strategy that outlines our pledges regarding the care of patients with dementia and our focus on 'person- centred care'. Read moreabout our care for patients with dementia.
Please read our leaflet for Carers or Relatives of Patients with Dementia
Read our leaflet about Delirium and how it can affect patients
Fire Safety in the home
Did you know that Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service offer FREE fire safety checks in the home? Find out more about the services they offer on their website and more information here
Safeguarding Adults in Gloucestershire
Please click on the following link to view information about Safeguarding Adults in Gloucestershire
Spiritual Care (link to our Spiritual Care pages on this website)
Positive Caring Programme: run by Gloucestershire County Council
Carers Gloucestershire latest newsletter - Caring Matters
Gloucestershire Young Carers
Managing Memory Together
Gloucestershire Carers Emergency Scheme