Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is committed to ensuring that carers are recognised as important partners in the care of patients and to promoting a carer friendly culture.

Acknowledging carers and other family members and the important role they play in providing care helps staff to provide the best care for patients.

What is a carer?

A carer is anyone who cares, unpaid, for a friend or family member who due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction cannot cope without their support. There is a wide range in the type of care provided and the amount of time spent caring.

NHS England published ‘An integrated approach to identifying and assessing carer health and wellbeing’ in 2016. It sets out an approach for NHS organisations to meet the statutory requirement to meet the Care Act 2014.

The Trust’s Carers' Plan 2017 – 2020 was formulated with the input of carers and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Carers Trust. As a Trust we aim to:

  • Recognise carers and the essential role they play
  • Identify carers (as patients or as visitors) at all points of contact
  • Support our workforce to be 'carer' aware
  • Support information sharing with carers
  • Provide information and signpost carers to key sources of support and guidance
  • Promote a carer friendly environment

As part of this we have signed up to John’s Campaign. The campaign asks hospitals wards to pledge to welcome carers and include them in the patient's treatment plan when appropriate. CUH has pledged the following as part of John's Campaign:

"Our Trust is committed to working in partnership with carers to provide person-centred care. We value carer expertise and the vital role they play. They are welcomed outside visiting hours on all adult wards and encouraged to discuss their needs with the nurse in charge"

It is understood that some carers wish to continue their caring role, for example assist with personal care, whilst a patient is in hospital, and this should be facilitated where possible. At the same time, carers should not feel obliged to continue with all or any of their caring role. A carer's role can be demanding and CUH staff can offer access to help and information in order to support them in their role.

Carers' Plan 2017 - 2020 (For CUH staff on the Trust network)

How do we identify carers at CUH?

Within CUH we can identify carers through the 'This is Me' document (used for patients with dementia), that patients may bring into hospital with them, or via a GP surgery, as well as ward staff using the 'What is important to me' poster which is situated by the bedside and documents who the carer is.

How do our wards help support carers?

Each ward can set up the following arrangements with carers:

  • Ward/Carer agreements - to document how a carer wishes to continue provide specified care during the patient's admission
  • Carers' passports - to clearly identify carers on the wards. These are yellow badges which can be issued to carers
  • Some wards may have Comfort packs (while stocks last) - toiletries which can be given to carers if they do not have any with them
  • Ask the ward for The Heading Home leaflet if you haven’t been given a copy
  • Ward visiting times have been standardised across the Trust to 11:00 to 20:00 so that carers (and all visitors) find it easier to know when they can visit. Visiting times leaflet

Local Support and Resources

Ask the ward manager on the patient’s ward or the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS – 01223 216756) about the support offered by Caring Together.

Or telephone Caring Together on 0345 241 0954 or 01480 499090.

Caring Together also has an office in ‘One Place’ at the front of the main Addenbrooke’s Hospital entrance.

Caring Together
4 Meadow Park ,Meadow Lane, St Ives, Cambridgeshire, PE27 4LG

National Support and Resources

Carers Trust
The Carers Trust provides health and social care professionals with trusted information and best practice as part of their work with carers.

Carers UK
Carers UK  campaign to protect and extend the rights of carers. They provide practical advice and support to carers.


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