Standard 3: Carer Support - before and after death

The General Practice commits to:


To meet this standard the practice commits to:


Self-Assessment


Practice Guidance


3.1 Early identification of carers

 

3.1a Achieve consistent identification of carers
 
  • An agreed protocol for identifying carers of people who have advanced serious illness or who may be approaching the end of life.
 
  • Consider how all members of the team can contribute to carer identification.
  • Record the patient's main carer(s) and their details, for example, name, address, contact number, relationship to patient for example,spouse, neighbour, son (state if young carer), paid carer

3.2 Identification of carers' needs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.2a Conduct holistic carer assessments
  • Where possible, record a holistic carer assessment, that is, to identify problems from their perspective: both in terms of their needs as 'clients'(a patient) and their needs as 'co-workers'(caring for a person).
  • Consider what is helpful to include in holistic carer assessments.
  • Consider involving your PPG / PPI groups if developing your own practice holistic assessments.

Many HCPs report being fearful of opening up 'a can of worms' by asking carers what support they feel they need, but evidence shows that it is often quite simple things that make a difference and even just being asked is in itself supportive.

 3.2b Support carers both as 'clients'and  'co-workers'
  • Information provided to carers which can include understanding of the patient's illness, how to manage symptoms and medicines, what signs to look out for, when to make a call for help.
  • Make contact with the carer after the patient's death
    to assess what on-going support is required.

Acknowledge carers are a resource in patient care.

  • Consider how the practice supports carers to preserve their own psychological and physical health, as 'clients' (directly or signposting).
  • Consider how the practice provides information, knowledge and skills to carry out their role as 'co-worker' more effectively (directly or signposting)
  • Consider Social Care signposting for a formal carer's assessment
  • Consider specific needs and legal issues for young carers
  • Consider a practice/ CCG resource of useful information for carers
  • Be aware of the legal requirements around carer involvement in decision making for the patient, for example, MCA/ Best Interest
  • Example of Family Carer's Prescription 
  • Family Carer's Prescription Information Leaflet
3.1c Develop inter-practice communication
  • A system for communication between practices to address when the patient's carer does not belong to the same GP practice as the patient.
  • Consider having a system in place for raising safeguarding alerts
  • Consider Consent, Confidentiality and Information Governance when sharing information with other practices and the wider system, such as hospices, community nursing, social care etc.

Next: Standard 4: Seamless well planned coordinated use >

QI 3: Continuous Improvement

Collect feedback (for example, sensitively interview, survey) carers to assess whether they think the practice is meeting their needs, and show how any information provided is used to help improve care and support.

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