Summary of report content
Healthwatch Bury undertook a research project identifying issues and concerns of carers when the person, who is being cared for, is experiencing a mental health (MH) crisis. They visited two local mental health carer groups to hold focus groups, distributed surveys and held telephone interviews with individuals who could not attend the focus groups. Healthwatch spoke to 32 carers.
The key findings showed that caring for someone with mental health impacted on the carers own health and wellbeing with many experiencing poor mental health themselves. Carers described how their role left them isolated leaving little time or money for socialising. The need for respite was highlighted but the constant anxiety caused by their situation means carers are unlikely to fully relax. Carers described their frustrations with the lack of early intervention and only when the person being cared for is in crisis do they get help. Carers want to be given more practical advice and support, especially outside normal clinic hours with the need for an out of hours crisis centre being highlighted.
Healthwatch made several recommendations about promoting the details of local carer groups through GP practices and other local services. This report does not contain a service provider response.