Are You A Carer?


Anyone can become a carer, they come from all walks of life, all cultures and can be any age, including children.

Many people don’t recognise themselves as carers, but they look after someone with an illness, disability, mental health issue, learning disability, addiction or are parent carers and you don’t have to live with the person you care for.

You are probably a carer if you help someone (family member, neighbour, friend etc.) with the following things:

  • Help someone to wash, dress and eat
  • Taking them to regular appointments,
  • Doing their shopping
  • Keeping them company
  • You aren’t paid to look after the person you’re caring for
  • You spend a lot of time caring for the person – there’s no legal definition of this, but it could mean anything from a few hours a day, to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week


Being a carer is very demanding and you deserve as much support as the person you are caring for.

Therefore, it is very important to tell your GP that you care for someone, even if they are not registered with us themselves, so that it can be coded in your medical records.

This enables us to ensure you have the right support.

We can:

  • advise on how to get prescriptions delivered to the patient rather than you having to collect them yourself
  • arrange appointments at the surgery that are suitable to you
  • offer you an annual carers review and flu injection to check how you are coping and that you are aware of all the support available to you (if the person you care for is also entitled to a flu injection, appointments can be made together to save you coming to the practice more than once)
  • advise you on where to get further support and information
  • if the person you care for is registered with us we can assess their needs to ensure they are receiving the best medical care package


Your local council may be able to arrange practical help to allow you to care more effectively and reduce your stress.

This could include things like arranging for someone to step in for a while to give you a break or providing some extra support for the person you care for, which gives you more time for your other responsibilities.

To see if you can get any help, you’ll need the council in which the person you care for lives, to carry out a carer’s assessment which all carers are entitled to. You may be able to do this online through the council’s website or call the switch board who will direct you. Tell them you are a carer and ask them to carry out a carer’s assessment for you.

You can ask at any time but it’s always a good idea to ask again if your needs change or you need more support.

For Newham, please visit:


Newham Carer’s Network is a local organisation that you can go to if you need help, support, advice or guidance in your caring role. They can:

  • Provide advocacy, information, and advice for all carers
  • Offer support services and activities for young carers
  • Assist the development of carer’s support groups
  • Provide a programme of health support services for carers
  • Facilitate a carers forum in Newham
  • Encourage planners and providers to develop services which are “carer-aware”.
  • Reach hidden carers e.g. young carers, carers from BME communities, and marginalised carers through targeted outreach

They can be found at:

Stratford Advice Arcade, 107-109 the Grove, Stratford, E15 1HP
020 8519 0800


You may also be able to get help with your income if your caring duties are affecting your finances.

Depending on your income, assets and living arrangements, you may be able to:



If you have not informed us that you are a carer, please contact the Practice by calling us or completing our notification form below;

If you have already notified us that you are a carer, please take the time to complete our Carer’s Strain form below so that we know that you are coping or that we need to assess any further support you may need;

Carer Strain Index and Questions.

  • A carer is someone who, without payment, provides help and support to a friend, neighbour or relative who could not manage otherwise because of frailty, illness or disability. Caring for somebody is never an easy task. Below are some statements that outline some of the difficulties which carers may face. You are unlikely to experience all of these, but I would like to know how much of a burden different aspects of looking after your relative are.

    Please rate your answers from 'No burden at all' to 'A great burden' below:

  • What caring tasks do you perform and how do you feel about it?
  • Do you think that the person you are caring for is getting enough help?
  • 10) What could we do as a practice to help and to make things easier for you?




Date published: 17th May, 2019
Date last updated: 17th October, 2020