Focus on Hidden Carers in Kent

Download (PDF 515KB)

Summary of report content

In 2018, Healthwatch Kent conducted a programme of outreach work to speak to hidden carers across Kent in order to ensure their voice was heard and used as part of a review of carers services being carried out by Kent County Council. Hidden carers are people who aren’t part of official carer support groups, or in touch with agencies providing support to carers, for a variety of reasons. Healthwatch Kent reported that 50% of the Carers they spoke to were caring for someone for over 50 hours a week. Many people simply said “they need looking after all the time’. The biggest challenge carers faced was their psychological wellbeing, closely followed by the need to manage nursing tasks and having no time to get everything done. Extreme tiredness, feeling lonely and isolated were also big issues for Carers. Most people spoken to by Healthwatch Kent had either retired or been forced to give up work so that they could provide the care. 85 people reported that they were caring for someone all on their own, with 45 saying that they relied on family or friends and neighbours for support. Healthwatch Kent state in the report that they would normally make formal recommendations based on the feedback we have heard but, in this report they decided to purely share the feedback and ensure as many organisations as possible hear the voice of these hidden carers. The findings were shared with Kent County Council to use during the review of Carer services.

Would you like to look at:

General details

Report title 
Focus on Hidden Carers in Kent
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Kent
Date of publication 
Thursday, 1 March, 2018
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 1 March, 2018
Date evidence capture finished 
Thursday, 1 March, 2018
Type of report 
Key themes 
Consent to care and treatment
Cost of services
Health inequalities
Health promotion
Holistic support
Information providing
Lifestyle and wellbeing
Quality of care
Other information of note about this report 
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Not known
Primary research method used 
User stories
How was the information collected? 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Secondary care services 
Day care
Social care services 
Adult social care
Children services
Day care (social care services)
Home care / domiciliary care
Community services 

Details about conditions and diseases

Types of disabilities 
Not known
Types of long term conditions 
Not known
What type of pregnancy or maternity themes are included in the report 

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Not known
Not known
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
What type of impact was determined? 
Implied Impact

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.