South Tyneside CCG News

South Tyneside £1.4m investment to support carers

Fri 27th January 2012

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Carers living in South Tyneside can take a break thanks to investment of over £1.4m from NHS South of Tyne and Wear.

The investment which has come from the government equates to  £350,000 for South Tyneside PCT which goes towards supporting carers’ short breaks.

The aim of the short breaks for carers’ initiative is to recognise and value carers’ as being fundamental to strong families and stable communities.

Support will be tailored to meet individuals’ needs, enabling carers’ to maintain a balance between their caring responsibilities and, a life outside caring, whilst enabling the person they support to be a full and equal citizen.

Carers Centres in South Tyneside which offer advice, information, training and support to carers’ have received the funding to offer breaks and support to carers.

Penny Davison, Senior Business and Contract Manager for NHS South of Tyne and Wear, said: “The £1.4m investment we have made is really significant for carers’ as it has enabled Primary Care Trusts, Local Authorities and Carers’ Organisations to make joint plans on how we can support carer’s to have short breaks.

“Carers are often hidden and isolated from their communities and they often don’t see themselves as carers’ but simply looking after a family member or a loved one.  But in many cases they are providing very high levels of care on a day to day basis, and without their help many people would be in formal care or in hospital.”

She added: “This investment is funding initiatives to provide a wide range of services to support carers’, including individually tailored short breaks.  It is really good to be able to offer a service to carers’ where they choose their own time – out activities.”

The initiatives can include gym membership, cinema trips and holistic therapies and carers’ can choose how they would like to take their break.

Gordon Conochie, Policy and Parliamentary Officer, for The Princess Royal Trust for Carers said: “South Tyneside PCT and Sunderland Teaching Primary Care Trust, Gateshead PCT are setting an example to the rest of England. They are all in the top dozen PCTs, out of 152, for investing in carers, which is a remarkable achievement. Importantly, they have worked with local carers and carers’ organisations to develop plans and have published plans and budgets for local carers to see which only a few other PCTs have done.”

Any one who is thinks they may be a carer as they are providing unpaid practical and /or emotional support to someone may qualify for the scheme is encouraged to contact their local Carers Centre.

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