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Supporting Carers Consultation

Between October 2009 and March 2010 we consulted carers on how best we can support them.


Who is a Carer?

The Princess Royal Trust for Carers describes a carer as:

“someone who, without payment, provides help and support to a partner, child, relative, friend or neighbour, who could not manage without their help. This could be due to age, physical or mental illness, addiction or disability”.

The term carer should not be confused with a care worker, or care assistant, who is paid for looking after someone.


Why were we consulting with carers?

Birmingham City Council has a responsibility to recognise those carers whose caring duties have a significant impact on their lives. As part of this, we have reviewed the way we help and support carers in Birmingham.

To make sure we did this well, we asked carers for their views on the changes we were planning to make.

The basis for the review is outlined in the Terms of Reference document below. The reasons for carrying out this review were:

  • our Fair Access to Breaks for Carers Scheme (FASBC) ended in June 2009;
  • the Government introduced a new way of delivering adult social care, known as personalisation. More information about personalisation can be found here: www.in-control.org.uk;
  • the National Carers Strategy is clear that we should be offering better choice to carers and the people they care for together. You can find more information about this at the Carers UK website;
  • changing the way we assess for, and arrange, adult social care services in Birmingham.

The aim of the review was to:

  • give carers, and the people they care for, more choice and flexibility about the support they receive;
  • make sure that we are better at identifying the needs of carers, so we can support them to continue caring;
  • make sure we fully consider the impact on the carer of their caring duties;
  • make sure that the assessment and support planning processes for the carer are done together with the person they care for.

Key dates for the consultation

The timescales for the review were:

  • October 2009: formal review started.
  • February 2010: feedback collected.
  • 29 March 2010: final report to Cabinet.
  • July 2010: the new process will be implemented.

Your views

The consultation asked carers and services for their views on:

  • whether the carer and the person they care for should be assessed together, so that the support plan suits the needs of both;
  • whether the carer's section of the Service User’s Assessment form below gives a full picture of the carer’s situation;
  • whether the questions in the Carers Assessment form below are easy to understand, and whether the form clearly shows the carer’s needs and the things in their life they would like to change;
  • the Birmingham City Council, Adults and Communities Carer’s leaflet Help and Support for Carers (now called Support for Carers).

What happened next?

The consultation is now closed and the comments we received from carers and service users were included in the report called 'Review of advice and support for carers'.

Cabinet agreed the report on 29 March 2010.


More information

If you would like more information about the new way of providing support and services for carers, please see the carers assessment page.

You can find details of all Birmingham City Council consultations on the Birmingham Be Heard website.

Thank you to everyone who took part in the consultation. Your views are important to us.


Consultation documents