Medway has 25,000 carers according to the last census and Medway Council and NHS Medway Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) believes many more people are caring for friends or family but not recognising the extent of their role.

Caring for a loved one can be hard, but by registering with their GP’s Carers’ Register, carers can access a wealth of support. “Many people who care for loved ones or family members are hidden,” says Dr Gill Fargher, GP Member, NHS Medway CCG.

“Young carers in particular keep quiet about what they do and many husbands, wives and other relatives care for family members but see it as part of their role and are too proud to consider support.

“But caring for someone who is disabled or unwell can be stressful and can have a detrimental effect on the carer’s health and wellbeing, which is why we’re encouraging everyone who looks after someone to get in touch and see what support is available.”
NHS Medway CCG is also encouraging people who look after loved ones to let their GP practice know so they can be added to the Carers’ Register which helps GPs make sure carers receive the support they need.

Medway Council and NHS Medway CCG have funded Carers FIRST in Kent & Medway to administer the Carer’s Support Payment, which is one off funding available for carers. Anyone who looks after someone for 20 hours a week or more should get in touch to see if they are eligible for funding. Contact Carers FIRST in Kent & Medway on 0300 303 1555 or see http://www.carersfirst.org.uk.

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