Carers Advice

Are You a Carer?

Many carers don’t see themselves as carers and it takes them an average of two years to acknowledge their role as a carer (NHS website: Understanding Carers).

If you are please let Carers UK know  - they may be able to help you.

Carers UK

They’re here to make sure that no matter how complicated your query or your experience, you don’t have to care alone.

Telephone: 020 7378 4999


It’s likely that every one of us will have caring responsibilities at some time in our lives with the challenges faced by carers taking many forms. Many carers juggle their caring responsibilities with work, study and other family commitments. Some, in particular younger carers, are not known to be carers. They don’t tell relatives, friends or health and care professionals about their responsibilities because of a fear of separation, guilt, pride or other reasons.

This means that the sort of roles and responsibilities that carers have to provide varies widely. They can range from help with everyday tasks such as getting out of bed and personal care such as bathing, to emotional support such as helping someone cope with the symptoms of a mental illness.

The Department of Health’s mandate to NHS England includes ensuring that the NHS becomes dramatically better at involving carers as well as patients in care. The importance of carers is noted in the NHS Five Year Forward View which notes that to support carers properly we need to have multi-agency and community integration (Five Year Forward View, Oct 2014).

Promoting equality and addressing health inequalities are at the heart of NHS England’s values. Throughout the development of the policies and processes cited in this document, we have:

  • Given due regard to the need to eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation, to advance equality of opportunity, and to foster good relations between people who share a relevant protected characteristic (as cited under the Equality Act 2010) and those who do not share it.
  • Given regard to the need to reduce inequalities between patients in access to, and outcomes from, healthcare services and in securing that services are provided in an integrated way where this might reduce health inequalities.

Useful Information

There is a wealth of information on the NHS website about carers and caring. Below are some links into the site that we hope you will find useful.

Finance and Law

Help claiming benefits, looking after your bank balance and understanding the legal issues of caring.

  • Benefits for carers

    Directing carers to the benefits that can help them in their caring role

  • Benefits for the under-65s

    Advice and information on helping the person you look after get the benefits that they are entitled to.

    Benefits for the over-65s

    Advice and information on financial support for older people with a disability or illness.

  • Carer's Assement

    How your benefits maybe affected after the death of the person you look after and what happens to their benefits

  • Other benefits

    Advice for carers and the people they are looking after on claiming a whole host of other benefits unrelated to their disability or caring

Smart Phone App's to Help You In Your Caring Role

Smartphone apps can help carers in all sorts of ways, there are medical apps, supportive apps, lifestyle apps and more to make your life a little bit easier. There are literally thousands of apps available to carers, so to help you choose between them, we’ve picked out eight that you might find useful.

All these apps can be downloaded from the Apple App store or Google Play store


This is a free app developed by the NHS to help patients and their carers manage medication and GP and hospital visits. The app also makes it easier to organise caring, as you can add children and elderly relatives to the app and arrange their appointments and prescriptions.


This was developed by the national charity, Carers UK. It was designed by carers for carers and combines group messaging with other useful features including to-do and medication lists. Jointly works by creating a circle of care for the person or people you are looking after. You can use it on your own or invite other people to join and share the care. Jointly works on all devices and is available from app stores or directly from the website, with a one-off joining fee of £2.99.

Freestyle Libre

This app allows people with Diabetes to monitor their blood sugar levels. As well as offering a quick and useful way for people to monitor their blood sugar levels it has a function called Connect to allow carers to remotely monitor the blood sugar levels of someone they’re caring for. This can aid peace of mind for the caregiver and the person being cared for, allowing greater independence for you both. This is especially handy if you’re caring for a child with Diabetes or an elderly relative.

My House of Memories

This app is made for carers of people with dementia. Using pictures of objects from the past, it’s a way of exploring memories and can be a great comfort to carer and cared-for alike.


Medisafe helps keep track of medications and sends reminders when it’s time to take them. It offers peace of mind to you and whoever you’re caring for.

Voice Analyst

This is an app developed for people with Parkinson’s Disease, whose speech is affected by the condition. It helps them to make themselves better understood and so aids communication with carers, family members, friends and clinicians. It has been recommended by the charity Parkinson’s UK.

Recipe Keeper

Planning meals and remembering recipes when you’re caring for someone can be very time-consuming. This app helps you store all your recipes and also plan meals that suit all the family, taking into account any special dietary needs. It’s also a place to keep shopping lists so you don’t have to write them out each time you go to the supermarket.


Carers UK forum

While this is not yet available as an app, this forum for carers can be accessed on your phone, tablet, or PC. The forum is a community of people in a similar position to you and who may well know exactly how you feel and what issues you’re facing. Many carers feel isolated so sharing experiences and problems can be hugely helpful.

If you are a carer for someone with a disability, you might be eligible to join the Motability Scheme on their behalf as an appointee.