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Dr Nan Greenwood (St George’s University of London & Kingston University) Dr Anne Arber (University of Surrey) ESRC Carers seminar series: Carers in the.

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Presentation on theme: "Dr Nan Greenwood (St George’s University of London & Kingston University) Dr Anne Arber (University of Surrey) ESRC Carers seminar series: Carers in the."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dr Nan Greenwood (St George’s University of London & Kingston University) Dr Anne Arber (University of Surrey) ESRC Carers seminar series: Carers in the 21 st Century: developing the evidence base York, February 2013

2 Overview and aims General practice teams and carers Video clip of a carer Carers at the end of life Discussion groups – more details later Feedback and conclusions

3 Why general practice? ‘GPs and their teams are usually the first place that carers have contact with the National Health Service. They are uniquely placed to recognise that someone is, or is about to become, a carer.’ (RCGP & PRTC) Over 80% of carers see their GP in any one year Carers make up approximately 1 in 10 patients on any GP practice list

4 The Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF) and carers The QOF includes an indicator which relates to identifying carers This is worth 3 QOF points Most practices (98%) in England and Wales in 2009 received these points but less than 1% of practice lists are identified as carers

5 Government funding As part of its Carers’ Strategy between 2011 and 2015 £400 million has been allocated to PCTs in England to improve support for carers Councils also receive a Carers’ Grant within their General Local Government Allowance Grant Some authorities use this to work with GP practices to reach and support carers Money is not ring-fenced NHS trusts can set their own priorities for spending it

6 Research There is little recent research UK postal survey with GPs and general practice teams: GPs thought they had a key, proactive role Lacked time, resources and training (Simon & Kendrick 2001) Australian research investigating GPs’ perceptions: GPs were aware of carers’ increased emotional needs but offered ‘practical’ services (e.g. referring & directing carers to services for practical assistance) GPs preferred to refer carers to community services but some did offer counselling - ‘informal sharing’ or ‘coffee cup counselling’ (Bulsara & Flynn 2006)

7 A survey with GPs Postal survey with 78 GPs General practice should proactively identify carers But supporting carers can be difficult Barriers include time, resources and lack of knowledge They lack training and half lack confidence working with carers There are too few services for carers to which practices can refer A quarter thought carers would like emotional support About one in five mentioned referral and information/advice Services offered specially for carers were limited (Greenwood et al 2010) Conclusion: little has changed since 2001

8 Video of Shara - a former carer and now carer mentor

9 Variability in support In the National Voices Survey (n=22,292) the support for carers in the last 3 months of life was surveyed: 20% report getting support but would have liked more support 15% report not getting enough support despite trying 15% would like support but didn’t ask (DH 2012)

10 End of life care strategy (DH 2008) Identifies the importance of the preferred place of care and place of death (DH 2008). By 2035 49.5% of all deaths in the UK will be in the over 85 age group. (In 2010 over 85 age group deaths equated to 36% of all deaths).

11 Place of death 51% died in hospital 21% at home 22% in care homes 6% in hospice National Voices Survey (DH 2012)

12 Challenges for general practice Difficult to distinguish between carers at the end of life and carers in general Difficult to define when someone is nearing the end of life as some illness is unpredictable especially non- malignant disease (Kings Fund 2011) Lack of onward referrals and access to services/support End of life care offered late

13 General practice and care planning Gold Standards Framework - developed in primary care to identify patients likely to die within 12 months Advance care planning – discussions take place in primary care with the patient and the family/carer and these discussions documented in the patient records

14 Second fiddle status Family care givers were crucial to enabling patients to die at home. However, carers seem to be negated to ‘second fiddle’ in the many areas including general practice, social services, and the research agenda at the end of life (Lowson et al 2012)

15 6 strongest predictors of home death Family agreement Extended family support Living with primary caregivers Patient expresses preference Low functional status Use and intensity of home care (Bailey et al 2012, Grande et al 2004)

16 Research agenda? What other information do we need to have regarding general practice and support for carers at the end of life? What are the key research questions for carers at the end of life? Please prioritise them.

17 Five key ways for GPs and primary care teams to support carers (PRTC &RCGP p7) 1. Just listen! 2. Think of depression 3. Ask about finances 4. Signpost to services 5. Plan for emergencies


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