Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010
The Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure 2010 was passed by the National Assembly for Wales on 22 September 2010 and received Royal Assent on 10 November 2010. The Carers Strategies (Wales) Regulations 2011 were approved by the National Assembly for Wales on 6 December 2011. The Measure, Regulations and Guidance on implementing the Measure were issued to LHBs, Velindre NHS Trust, the Welsh Ambulance Trust and Social Services (the ‘designated authorities’) on 8 December 2011.
The Carers Strategies (Wales) Measure places a statutory duty on the ‘designated authority’ or two or more ‘designated authorities’ to prepare, publish and implement a strategy for the benefit of unpaid carers.
• set out how information and guidance will be provided to carers, that will assist them in carrying out their caring role effectively; and
• set out how carers will be consulted and involved in decisions affecting them and those they care for.
LHBs are designated as the ‘lead authority’ in the Regulations. They will be required to lead the work to develop and implement the Strategies, working in partnership with Social Services. The Regulations clearly define and prescribe the range of duties placed on ‘designated authorities’. The Regulations apply only in part to the Welsh Ambulance Trust.
Here are the main points arising from the Regulations:
• The strategies must cover a 3 year period, be reviewed at 18 months and an annual report must be submitted to Welsh Ministers.
• The strategies must be submitted to Welsh Ministers by 31 October 2012.
• The ‘designated authorities’ must consult with voluntary organisations in the development of local strategies.
• The LHB must engage with General Practitioners in the implementation of local strategies; set out how staff will be trained in delivering the requirements of local strategies and the languages and format by which local strategies will be made available to carers.
• The strategies must set out the appropriate information and advice which ‘designated authorities’ are required to provide to carers.
• The ‘designated authorities’ must ensure that carers are consulted with in a timely fashion, that their knowledge of the cared for person is treated with respect, that they are made aware of their rights to a needs assessment by the local authority, that assistance is provided to help carers understand decisions taken if required, that where decisions are taken in the absence of carers, that those decisions are promptly explained, that consultation occurs at regular intervals and includes consideration of support needed at short notice, that due regard is taken of their age and any disability and cultural needs, that carers are made aware of support available from voluntary organisations and that training on consulting with carers is provided to staff