New rights came into force on 1st April for unpaid carers in Scotland, providing care for family, friends and neighbours. The definition of carer has also been extended so that it can include more people .Check if this is you here: Am I a Carer?
Local Authorities now have a duty to offer carers a support plan. Young Carers can also be provided with a ‘Statement’ if they so wish provided by either their local authority, another local authority(where they are at school), a health board or a grant aided/independent school they attend.
Local Authorities and Health Boards must involve the carer in the support being provided to those who are being cared for.
“Each health board must ensure that, before a cared-for person is discharged from hospital, it involves [the carer] in the discharge of the cared-for person.”
And the carers views should be taken account of when making that decision.
Aileen Campbell, Public Health Minister in the Scottish Government said:
“Carers play a vital role in Scottish society, providing millions of hours of unpaid care a week for friends, family and neighbours. We owe them an enormous debt of gratitude.
“It is vital that all carers receive the support they need to look after their own health and wellbeing, and have a life alongside caring. That is what the Carers Act will deliver.
“Our reforms will significantly boost the rights of carers and ensure that health boards, local authorities and others are doing all they can to identify and support the carers in their area.
“Crucially, that means having their own needs identified and addressed, and being involved in decisions about their own support as well as the needs of the person they care for.”