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Hospitals launch new Carers Charter

Last updated: 26/11/2020

Hospitals in Bristol and Weston have reaffirmed their commitment to supporting and working in partnership with carers by launching a new Carers Charter.

North Bristol NHS Trust (NBT) and University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust (UHBW) have jointly launched a new and improved Carers Charter this Thursday 26 November to coincide with Carers Rights Day 2020.

The Carers Charter promotes a culture of supporting and working in partnership with carers by recognising them as expert partners in care and valuing the vital work that they do.

Helen Blanchard, Director of Nursing and Quality at North Bristol NHS Trust, said:

“Carers are vitally important to the provision of exceptional, person-centred healthcare that we aspire to at NBT. If a patient requires their carer they will be a crucial link between that patient and staff. This charter sets out how we can support them and work in partnership with them to meet the needs of the patients. We are 100% committed to this.”

Carolyn Mills, Chief Nurse at University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“The Carers Charter promotes a culture that recognises the vital role carers play within our hospitals and is something we are fully committed to. For someone who has caring responsibilities, the charter helps to ensure that when the person they care for has been admitted we will treat them as an expert partner, ensure they have a voice in hospital, are supported in their role, are provided with appropriate information and are involved in the discharge of the person they care for.”

The charter commits to:

  • Treat carers as equal partners – by ensuring the role carers play is valued by all staff who will respect, listen and understand carers and what they do.
  • Support carers – by informing carers of their rights to an assessment, providing information about the range of support and advice services available, recognising the importance of carer needs being met and support them to have breaks away from the ward when needed.
  • Share information – in a timely, appropriate and accessible way, but also involving carers in decision making.
  • The discharge process – we will help carers to understand the discharge process, respect their detailed knowledge of what happens outside of hospital and include carers in all discussions of care and medication once consent is obtained.
  • Young carers – valuing and involving our many young carers.
  • Giving a voice – ensuring carers are listened to and involved in the planning and delivery of services.

There are 13.6 million people in the UK who are carers and Carers Rights Day aims to make sure they are aware of their rights, let carers know where to get help and support, and to raise awareness of the needs of carers.

A carer is someone who provides care for someone else who, due to illness, mental health problems, substance misuse, physical and learning disability, old age or frailty, is unable to care for themselves without their support. This charter includes young carers and parent carers.

The full Carers Charter can be found on the NBT website and the UHBW website.