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Carers across Wales could be neglecting their own health and well-being by not ensuring their own care needs are assessed and met

First published:
14 June 2018
Last updated:

This was published under the 2016 to 2021 administration of the Welsh Government

To mark carers’ awareness week 2018, the Minister visited a carer’s centre in Swansea today to thank carers for their dedicated care to their loved ones and to urge carers to ensure they use their legal right to a carers' assessment. 

Under the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014, carers have an equal right to an assessment to see whether they need support to carry out their caring role and, if they do, to have that support provided. 

A carer is anyone, of any age, who provides unpaid care and support to a relative, friend or neighbour who needs care and support.

There are estimated to be more than 370,000 carers in Wales, contributing more than £8.1bn to the Welsh economy every year. 96% of the care provided to people in communities across Wales is given freely by family and friends.

To support the delivery of enhanced rights for carers under the Act the Welsh Government in partnership with stakeholders established three National Priorities for Carers in Wales:

  • Supporting life alongside caring;
  • Identifying and recognising carers; and
  • Providing information, advice and assistance to carers.
In 2018/19 a budget of £1.095m has been allocated to the delivery of progress against the national priorities and £3m has been specifically allocated to local authorities to enable them to provide additional respite support for carers

To oversee the delivery of outcomes for carers against these priorities, a Ministerial Advisory Group (MAG) is being established to provide a national forum to steer the delivery of improvements for carers and provide a cross sector response to the challenges they face.  

Minister for Children, Older People and Social Care, Huw Irranca-Davies said:

“It is not surprising that as carers dedicate their time to caring for loved ones within families and their wider community, sometimes they can neglect their own health and well-being.

“Our commitment to carers’ rights is reflected through the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014.. We are now two years into the implementation of the Act and with the support of the newly established Ministerial Advisory Group for Carers I want to ensure these enhanced rights for carers are realised.

“If carers have eligible needs, their local authority must meet those needs through a carers support plan.  

“I want to urge every carer to ensure they have their needs assessed. While caring for their loves one, it’s crucial they ensure they care for themselves.”