Centre for Mental Health has embarked on a new research project, looking at carer’s assessments and the support given afterwards. We will be focusing on the experiences of carers who look after an individual with a mental health condition. 

We’d love to hear from carers and health and social care practitioners about their views on carer’s assessments to be incorporated within our paper. To get involved and answer a survey, click the respective link below. You can learn more about the project below.

Health and Social Care Practitioner Survey - complete here

Mental Health Carers Survey - complete here

More about the project

Carers are a fundamental and understated asset to UK society. They work long, arduous hours, often for little monetary return, to support their loved ones and those in need. Carers UK value carers’ unpaid labour as equivalent to £132bn in 2016. This is almost equal to the annual government spending on health care (Carers UK, 2016).

Frequently, carers put aside their aspirations in terms of education and employment to devote their time to the care of another individual. Indeed, it is frequently recognised that there can be a ‘heavy price’ associated with caring, and carers are not always adequately supported by statutory bodies (Carers Trust, 2016).

The role of carers has become increasingly recognised in the UK political landscape, with both the Care Act and the Children and Families Act coming into force in 2015. It has further affirmed the importance of offering carer’s assessments to carers to assess their needs and allocate any support required.

Nevertheless, the State of Caring 2016 report by Carers UK has commented on the ‘emerging landscape’ after the change in law, stating that the ‘spirit’ of the care act has not been translated into reality (pg.5). In respect to carer’s assessments, in the Carers UK survey they found that only 35% of carers were offered an assessment in the last 6 months. They found that in particular, mental health carers were less likely to receive an assessment within two months, compared to other types of carers (Carers UK, 2016).

Following this, Centre for Mental Health has embarked on a new research project to understand the current state of carer’s assessments and support for mental health carers. We would really appreciate the views of mental health carers and social care practitioners to be incorporated in our paper. Please help shape our work - fill in the relevant survey above.