A carer is a person who looks after a relative, friend or neighbour who is finding life difficult to manage without help.  This may be because of illness, disability or old age.  The time spent caring ranges from a few hours per week to 24-hour attention.

What problems does this bring the carer?  

Lack of time for living their own lives

  • Competing demands of other responsibilities
  • Financial
  • Isolation
  • Stress
  • Resentment

Some or all of the following may be useful to contact:

  • Your GP (for help with those who are being cared for)
  • Durham County Carers Support (Tel: 0300 005 1213;  Text: 07624 818 403)
  • A Social Worker for possible help with things like home help, meals on wheels and respite care
  • A Welfare Rights Officer for advice about possible financial help

How can a carer help himself or herself?

In general, increasing the opportunities for self care.  This may take the following forms:

  • Sharing the caring, which makes time for the carer’s personal enjoyment.
  • Writing a “menu” of enjoyable activities which the carer can choose from when the opportunity arises.
  • Eating well.
  • Suitable physical activity.
  • Learning to relax and rest.
  • Developing a support network based on friends and family as well as using any of the contacts below.

Useful sources of information

Durham and Chester le Street Carers
Tel: 0191 387 1991
Website: www.ddccarers.org

Carers National Association
20/25 Glasshouse Yard
London
EC1A  4JS

Carer’s line Tel: 0345 573369 (10.00 – 5.00 p.m. weekdays)
FAX: 020 7490 8824
Website: http://www.carersuk.org/

Practice Carers Register

As part of the practice’s continued plans to improve our patient services we are working with Durham County Carers Support to identify and support carers.

The practice has developed a Carers’ Register to ensure that we provide the right services at the right time to carers.  This should ensure that you don’t have to repeatedly tell everyone about your caring responsibilities and that you have access to appropriate services and support.

Once you have identified that you are a carer and we have included you on our Register, you have the option to receive more information on services and support available from Durham County Carers Support.

Durham County Carers Support is a charitable organisation limited by guarantee.  They provide independent confidential advice, information, and support to careers.  They also provide a range of social events, excursions, and signposting to other organisations.

If you are a carer and would like to be included on our practice Carers Register, please telephone the surgery on 0191 374688.

If you would like more information on help available to carers, please inform reception staff or contact Durham County Carers Support directly on 0300 005 1213.

This service is independent from Social Services and at no time will any information be passed onto any other organisation without your consent.