For some people, being in hospital can be an overwhelming time – so when your loved one has been admitted and you are not sure which way to turn, you can head towards the new carer navigators at two of our local hospitals.
Local charity Carers’ Resource now has two workers in Airedale General Hospital and two in Bradford Royal Infirmary to support the families and friends of patients. The team, which is working in partnership with Bradford Council and two NHS trusts, will be on site seven days a week and can:
● Help carers and families to recognise that, as a carer, they can get support and help with their concerns.
● Attend meetings with carers (eg reviews, assessments, discharge)
● Let carers and families know about their entitlements, including their right to a carer’s assessment, and benefits.
● Connect carers to other services.
● Let carers know where they can get help after hospital discharge.
Keri Shepherd, a carer navigator at Bradford Royal Infirmary, said: “We’ll particularly be looking to help in situations where the carer’s life will significantly change when the patient is discharged.”
Martin Welton, team leader on the Intermediate Care Unit at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, said: “It’s great to strengthen our links with Carers’ Resource and the carer navigators. It’s already been successful and a huge help to patients’ families.”
One carer, whose mum was admitted with sickness and infection and was waiting for a dementia diagnosis, met Airedale General Hospital carer navigator Amy Brotherton in a hospital cafe after being put in touch by the hospital discharge team.
Amy said: “We discussed options and services to support both the carer and her mum after discharge. This included care within the home, residential services, emergency plans and the eligibility of them both to claim benefits.
“Having someone objective to speak to at such a vulnerable time meant the carer could make an informed decision about planning for her mum’s care. I also referred the carer to our locality team at Carers’ Resource, so she receives ongoing support after discharge.”
The carer got in touch to say how thankful she was for Amy’s support. She said: “It is good to be reminded of what is out there, and just to know that there is someone to turn to is so reassuring.”