What was the issue you were addressing or working on?
The Carers Anticipatory Care Project supports the Reshaping Care for Older People agenda by supporting the carers of older people in their own communities at the earliest point in their caring journey thereby minimising the need for crisis intervention and ensuring that independence is maintained for as long as possible.
What you did?
The Project is delivered by the Stirling and Falkirk & Clackmannanshire Carers Centres and led by two Carers Support Officers (CSOs). An Anticipatory Care approach has been utilised to ensure early identification of carers to provide them with personalised and outcomes-focussed support at potential crisis/transitional times in their caring journey.
The Princess Royal Trust Carers Centres in Stirling and Falkirk & Clackmannanshire each recruited a Carers Support Officer (CSO) to lead a new Anticipatory Care service development. The CSO established links with key NHS and other services that carers may have contact with, produces and disseminates information to individual carers and health and social care practitioners as well as providing support directly to carers.
What were the outcomes - benefits or otherwise?
This development commenced in 2012/13 and is funded until the end of March 2014. It is one of a range of initiatives led by the Stirling and Falkirk & Clackmannanshire Carers Centres which are designed to provide more effective support to the carers of older people. There have been considerable benefits of the CSOs working alongside and closely with other practitioners, particularly those within the NHS. Hidden carers have been identified and provided with a range of support as requested.
Feedback from carers to date has been overwhelmingly positive with the most favoured outcomes met being ‘happier’ and ‘less stressed’. Carers are better equipped to recognise at an earlier stage when they may require support and are better equipped to combine caring responsibilities with work, social, leisure and learning commitments and opportunities. The main outcome measure relating to professional satisfaction of the service is ‘number of referrals’ to the service. Working in close partnership with NHS colleagues has resulted in an increased number of referrals to the service. Key practitioners within the NHS have also reported improved awareness and understanding of the needs of carers.