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Carers Strategy to 'provide a blueprint' on how to see carers as 'people first'

DHSC publishes Carers Strategy 2024-34

A new ten-year strategy has been published by the Department of Health and Social Care aimed at highlighting how vital carers are in our Island community.

If implemented, the Carers Strategy 2024-34 could 'provide a blueprint' on how to see carers as 'people first'.

That's the hope of Crossroads, which has worked with the Department of Health and Social Care on the ten-year policy document.

The strategy outlines a number of policy goals, including a funding envelope for the charity to work with the department in the long-term.

It also addresses the main issues raised in the State of Caring Report, in which carers detailed the challenges they face and the impact on their own wellbeing and physical health.

Jackie Bettridge is the Chief Executive Officer of Crossroads, which provided 152,000 hours of respite care during 2022 alone.

She spoke to us ahead of Carers Week, which is taking place this week.

She says it's time for the Island to recognise the work carers do:

You can hear that full conversation in our latest Newscast HERE.

Speaking on the publication of the strategy, Jackie added: "We know that Carers should be seen as ‘people first’ and have their uniqueness respected, and it is our hope that this strategy will provide a blueprint through which this can be achieved.

"If approved, this will mean that carers are provided with the appropriate support to enable them to undertake their caring roles whilst balancing their own needs.

"Thank you to all of the carers who participated in the State of Caring survey. Your experiences and insight was key to developing the strategy which we hope reflect that valuable feedback."

Minister for Health and Social Care, Lawrie Hooper MHK, said: "Carers Week 2024 focusses on ‘putting carers on the map’ but we hope that this strategy, if supported by my colleagues in Tynwald, will help us go one step further.

"Without carers our healthcare system would face unmanageable levels of demand, they are absolutely invaluable to us and the people the look after, often to the detriment of their own physical or mental wellbeing. One of our Island Plan commitments is to tackle this by providing appropriate support for those who choose to care for others at home. 

"This strategy sets out what that support looks like, based on feedback from Carers themselves."

The strategy will be discussed at the June sitting of Tynwald.

You can find it in full HERE.

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