The Carers Charter (Kirklees) has been shortlisted in the Commissioning Support Services category for the prestigious Health Service Journal (HSJ) Value in Healthcare Awards.
The Carers Charter aims to encourage organisations in Kirklees to adopt carer friendly practices. The idea originated from a presentation from a local carer at an NHS North Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) Governing Body meeting and has been created in partnership with carers, Kirklees Council, NHS North Kirklees CCG and NHS Greater Huddersfield CCG. It is managed and owned by a carer-run community organisation – Investors in Carers.
The Charter has been developed following feedback from engagement events and an online consultation which provided carers with an opportunity to make suggestions about how health and social care organisations can work better in partnership with them.
The core principles at the heart of the Carers Charter are:
- Health and wellbeing of carers – supporting carers to maintain their own physical and mental wellbeing and recognise when help might be needed.
- Acknowledging carers as experts – it is important that carers voices are heard and that their contribution is sought and valued.
- Information and advice – the right information and advice being available at the right time.
- Working with professionals – health and social care professionals being ‘carer-aware’ so that positive relationships can be developed based on a common understanding of what it really means to be a carer.
Dr David Kelly, a local GP and Chair of NHS North Kirklees CCG said: “The Carers Charter is the first step towards making sure that we make a real difference to carers. As one of the pledges looks at how the CCG can assist GP’s to support carers, we will be coming out to practices to talk about what GP’s may already be doing to assist carers and how we can continue to develop this support in the future.”
The purpose of the charter is to enable carers to expect a minimum standard of support and to give carers the tools to ensure they can continue to fulfil their caring role.
The next stage requires the organisations involved to present this entry to a judging panel. Finalists will find out if they have won at the HSJ Value in Healthcare Awards on Tuesday 24 May in Manchester.