10 Things Carers Want To Know

Q1. How do I access a Carers’ Assessment?

Carers have a legal right to an assessment of their needs. It is your chance to discuss with social services what help you need with caring. You may be offered a carer’s assessment by your social services department or, if not, you can ask for one.

For more information:

(Social Care Direct is operated by Adult Social Care, part of East Sussex County Council)

Q2. How do I let my GP know I’m a carer?

Being a carer can often affect your health. You can let the reception staff at your surgery know that you are a carer and ask if this could be registered on your medical record. You may wish to enquire if they have any carer’s support services for you to make use of.

If you prefer, you could help them by filling in a Care for the Carers GP Registration form. Return this to your GP Surgery or send it to us and we can let your GP know that you’re a carer.

Contact us or download our GP Form.

Q3. How do I get a wheelchair assessment for the person I look after?

Wheelchair assessments can be accessed through their GP, district nurse, occupational therapist or your physiotherapist.

For more information:

Q4. How can I stay in work and care for someone?

Carers now have more statutory rights at work that help them manage their caring and employment needs. Employers may also be able to offer additional flexibility through their own policies and procedures to help you cope with the pressures of work and care.

Carers UK on 020 7378 4999 or online.

Q5. How do I know I’m receiving all the financial support I’m entitled to?

Carers may be entitled to a Carers Allowance and could also be entitled to other benefits from the government too. The benefits system is complicated. Claiming can be difficult and time-consuming. If you are not sure whether you can claim, you can get advice from the following organisations:

  • Age Concern Free National Helpline 0800 00 99 66
  • Citizen’s Advice Bureau 01323 471177 (Eastbourne) 01424 721420 (Hastings)
  • Department of Work & Pensions (DWP) 0845 7 12 34 56
  • General enquiries about Disabilities or Attendance Allowance

Q6. How do I get a break from my caring role?

Several organisations offer professional respite services or special holidays to enhance carers quality of life by providing support, enabling you to attend appointments, or take a short but well-earned break.

  • Use the TeleCheck service to get short-term remote support (More information here on page 20).
  • Activate your CRESS plan (More details here).
  • Contact Association of Carers about their Befriending with Respite service.
  • British Red Cross Society Support at Home service.

Q7. How can I meet other carers in a similar situation?

Care for the carers run events, groups and clubs for adult carers and young adult carers. These give you the opportunity to meet together socially, take a break, spend time with like-minded people and support each other. We can also signpost you to events organised by our partner organisations.

  • Check out the Care for the Carers news and events pages
  • Care for the Carers on 01323 738390
  • Carers forums website

Q8. How can I find out about different types of transport?

There are a variety of different transport schemes in East Sussex including community buses; social car schemes, community or group transport; non-emergency ambulance services and community rail partnership.

For more information on what service providers are in your area visit the East Sussex County Council website. Alternatively you can call their Passenger Transport team on 0345 60 80 190.

Other useful numbers:

  • ESDA: 01323 514 512
    Traveline: 0871 200 22 33
    St John Ambulance: 01273 371 511
    British Red Cross: 01634 821 533

Q9. How do I make sure I stay healthy?

Staying healthy is important for carers. Try to take some time out for yourself, and think of your own health too. The following organisations provide information to help you look after yourself, which in turn will help you to stay well to support the person you care for.

  • AgeUK
  • Warm Front on 0800 316 2805 (freephone) to see whether you might qualify for a Warm Front Grant to help with heating bills and home insulation
  • NHS Direct 24 Helpline on 0845 4647 or your local GP for information about flu jabs– free to all over 65’s and some main carers (under 65)
  • NHS Choices


Q10. How do I find out what I need to know about my carers’ issues?

Call: East Sussex County Council for a copy of their ‘Do you look after someone?’ quick guide 0345 60 80 191 or download a copy here.

Browse through the rest of the Care for the Carers website or get in touch with the team to find out more!