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Carers UK responds to alarming new figures on quality of life of carers

08 November 2013

New figures on the quality of life of carers show carers feeling they don’t have control over their lives, don’t have time to do things they value and are neglecting their own health and wellbeing as a result of the care they provide.

New statistics released by the Health and Social Care Information Centre come from a survey of those providing unpaid care to adults in receipt of services funded wholly or in part by Social Services during 2012-13.

Survey findings include:

78% of carers say they don’t have enough or any time to do things that they value and enjoy and less than a third (28.9%) said that they had the control they wanted over their everyday life.

More than a third (40%) of carers did not feel they had the time they needed to look after themselves by eating properly and getting enough sleep with nearly one in seven (14%) saying they felt they were neglecting themselves.

The survey also showed that many carers have health or care needs of their own - nearly a quarter (24 per cent) reported suffering from a long-standing illness and a fifth (20 per cent) stated they have a physical impairment or disability.

 

Heléna Herklots, Chief Executive of Carers UK responded saying:

This information shows once again the huge impact that caring has on the health and wellbeing of carers. It echoes what our own research tells us and what we hear from our own members that they are neglecting their own, often significant, health needs and making huge personal sacrifices to care for loved ones.

What makes these figures even more concerning is that these carers are known to their local authority but there are thousands more carers who haven’t been identified by their local council or had their own needs for support considered.

Local authorities will soon have clearer duties to assess and support carers and to promote their wellbeing. It is vital that local authorities have the funding to make this a reality for all carers who need support.

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