Assessments for carers
If you provide a regular and significant amount of care for someone, you are entitled to a carer's assessment from your Health and Social Care Trust.
Assessing a carer's situation
There is no definition of 'regular and significant care'. A carer's assessment means social services will look at your situation and see if you are entitled to any services that could make your caring role easier for you.
Preparing for a carer's assessment
Before your assessment, it is useful to make a list or keep a diary of everything you do when looking after the person you care for. Some things to think about are:
- do you get enough sleep?
- is your health affected by caring?
- can you leave the person you are looking after?
- are you worried about having to give up work?
- do you get enough time to yourself?
You might also include how caring affects you because of your:
- work or study (or if you are looking to work or study)
- other activities or commitments
At the assessment with the social worker, you can:
- talk about the impact your caring role has on you
- ask about services the Trust could provide to help you
Where the assessment takes place
The assessment is about you, the carer. You can have the assessment at your home or the home of the person you care for. The person you care for does not need to be present. If there is more than one carer providing regular care in your household, you are both entitled to an assessment.
Services that may be available
Services that may help you and the person you care for include:
- a break from caring
- help with housework
- changes to equipment or adaptations to the home
- emotional support
The assessment is about your needs as a carer. The needs of the person you are caring for should be discussed in their own needs assessment. If your situation changes, for example you need more support, you can ask for a re-assessment.
To ask for a re-assessment of your needs, contact your key worker or social worker. They can arrange a suitable time for your re-assessment.
Your care plan
Social services will develop a 'care plan' based on your care assessment and the community care assessment of the person you care for. This plan should include the support and services you have been assessed as needing.
Make sure your assessment covers what would happen in an emergency. The health professional involved in your carer’s assessment should be able to help you plan for this.
Assessed as needing support services
Your right to an assessment and to the services and support you may receive, is not linked to your income or capital (savings, land or property).