Support and services
Carer Triage Service (a Carer Wellbeing Review)
Part of the role of Wigan and Leigh Carers Centre is to make sure your commitment is recognised by those that matter, and that positive steps are taken to enhance, prioritise and protect your own wellbeing as a carer.
Once the initial registration to the carers centre is complete, our Carer Triage Service will contact you. The aim of the Carer Triage Service is to ensure that carers registering with us have access to timely and accurate information, and services to support them in their wellbeing and caring role. It also identifies whether carers would benefit from a Carers’ Emergency Card.
It’s a conversation with one of our friendly Carers Case Officers to talk about how being a carer affects you and highlight any support you may need.
Linking carers up with other members of our staff and teams ensures the most comprehensive advice and support is provided.
The Care Act 2014 gave all carers a legal right to a Carer’s Assessment.
A Carer’s Assessment is for adult carers of adults (over 18 years) who are disabled, ill or elderly.
A statutory Carer’s Assessment is an assessment on behalf of Wigan Council and is an opportunity for you to discuss your caring role and look at things which would help you in your role.
Don’t be put off by the word ‘assessment’. It is not an assessment of your ability to be a carer. The assessment works out what can be done to make life easier for you. A Carer’s Assessment is simply a conversation with you that will help us to understand the impact caring is having on your life. It will help us find out a bit more about you, your interests, what is important to you and how we can support you.
The Carer’s Assessment is separate to the Adult Social Care Assessment, which is for someone with an illness or disability that needs additional care and support.
As an outcome of your Carer’s Assessment, you may be entitled to a personal budget. This is an allocation of monies to support you in your role and can be used in a variety of ways. In addition to this, the Carer’s Assessment process will look to offer you the right information, advice and support for you, or put you in touch with other organisations who may be able to help.
If you decline an assessment, you will still be able to access information and advice, including any services offered directly by Wigan and Leigh Carers Centre, as well as any other support available from local organisations that may benefit you in your caring role.
Wigan and Leigh Carers Centre have a dedicated team that carries out statutory Carer’s Assessments.
Who can apply for a Carer’s Assessment?
If you are an adult carer (aged 18 or over and provide unpaid care for someone aged 18 or over) you have the legal right, under the Care Act 2014, to request a Carer’s Assessment. Also, if there is more than one carer providing care in your household, each carer is entitled to their own Carer’s Assessment.
If you are a parent carer (have parental responsibility for a disabled child) you have the legal right to a Carer’s Assessment from Wigan Council under the Children and Families Act 2014. In this instance, your needs as a carer will be assessed as part of a Family Needs Assessment. Parent carers are also entitled to an assessment where it is likely that they will need support after their child turns 18 years of age. This assessment will consider adult care and support arrangements.
If you are a young carer (younger than 18) and provide unpaid care, you have the legal right to a Carer’s Assessment from Wigan Council under the Children and Families Act 2014. Wigan and Leigh Carers Centre are responsible for undertaking all the Young Carer Assessments in Wigan borough. If you are a young carer we must involve you, your parents and anybody else you request in your assessment. It will look at why you are a carer, and consider what needs to change to make sure you don’t have to carry out too many, or inappropriate, caring activities which could impact on your welfare, education, or social development.
Do I have to pay for a Carer’s Assessment?
You will not be charged for having a Carer’s Assessment completed, this is your right as a carer and time spent with a Carers Assessor Officer is not charged.
How do I get an assessment?
You can ask for a Carer’s Assessment at any time, and you can ask for it to be done again if your caring role changes (this is known as a reassessment). Someone can also request a Carer’s Assessment on your behalf, such as a Social Worker or other professional (this will always be with your knowledge).
If you would like to discuss whether a Carer’s Assessment is appropriate for you, please contact us.
You do not have to have a Carer’s Assessment; it will not stop the person you care for from receiving services.
If the person you care for is in respite or in hospital care, it is best to wait for them to return home before a Carer’s Assessment is completed.
I am a professional supporting a carer – how do I refer a carer for an assessment?
To request a Carer’s Assessment for a client, please complete this form.
What happens next?
A Carer’s Assessment Officer from Wigan and Leigh Carers Centre will contact you to make an appointment with you. They will discuss your caring situation with you to find out what help you need, if any, to look after the person you are caring for (such as respite care). Assessments usually last at least an hour and can be held at a time that suits you. Your Carer’s Assessment can take place at the Carers Centre, or over the phone if you prefer. If you would like to discuss your accessibility needs, please call 01942 705959 or email: email@example.com.
If you wish, you can ask a friend or representative to be with you for your assessment, and you are also entitled to a written copy of your Carer’s Assessment.
How do you prepare for a Carer’s Assessment?
In preparation for your assessment, it is useful to give yourself some time to think about how caring affects you. It’s also important to start thinking about any help that would make a difference to you as a carer.
- What caring tasks do you undertake and how do you feel about doing them?
- Do you get enough time for yourself?
- What would help make things easier?
- What is your relationship with the person you care for like? How is caring affecting other relationships?
Bear in mind that you might not know about all the types of help that could be available, the assessment is to help us understand what things you are having problems with. Some carers may be eligible for a ‘personal budget’ due to the impact of their caring responsibilities. This can be used for a short break, relaxation therapies, pursuing an interest, attending training or pamper sessions. If you are eligible the assessor will discuss and support you through the process of securing your budget.
The assessment will consider whether or not your caring role impacts on your health or prevents you from achieving outcomes such as staying in work or having a social life, and what could be done to help you combine these things with caring. It should cover:
- Your caring role and how it affects your life and wellbeing
- Your health – physical, mental and emotional issues
- Your feelings and choices about caring
- Work, study, training, leisure
- Relationships, social activities and your goals
- Planning for emergencies (such as a Carers’ Emergency Card)
This isn’t always an easy process, but is the first step to recognising how much you do and taking action to prevent your caring role from becoming overwhelming.
After the Carer’s Assessment has been completed – what happens next?
A Carer’s Assessment is your opportunity to talk freely and openly about how your caring role affects you and what would help make things easier for you now or in the future. The assessment will help to identify your support needs and discuss how these could be met. Everyone’s needs are different, but we will work with you to find the best way to meet your particular needs. This could include accessing a variety of support services directly from Wigan and Leigh Carers Centre, providing specific information and advice, emergency planning, signposting/referring to other agencies that may be able to help, and for those eligible, a personal budget.
After your Carer’s Assessment, a support plan will be created that summaries all the mutually agreed actions from the assessment. Should you require a copy of your support plan this can be arranged. We understand your needs and wishes may change over time. Therefore, if appropriate we will offer you an annual review so you have the opportunity to discuss/review your caring situation. However, if your needs/circumstances change significantly before your annual review please contact us.
I had a Carer’s Assessment last year. Can I have another one?
You can ask for a review of your previous assessment once 12 months or more have passed since the date of your original Carer’s Assessment. You can ask for a review before this if your caring situation or circumstances have changed significantly.
I live in Wigan but the person I care for lives in another borough. Who does my Carer’s Assessment?
The local authority of the person you care for is responsible for your Carer’s Assessment. For example, if you live in Wigan but the person you care for lives in Bolton, Bolton Council would provide you with a Carer’s Assessment.
You can find out more information via these factsheets: