Carers - the UK's 'secret service'

Steve FordToday is the start of Carers Week 2009 (8-14 June). Every year the week is held to raise awareness of the six million carers in the UK - including those who care for the 120,000 people with Parkinson’s – each of them an unsung hero.
Carers Week logo
We speak to carers all the time who continue to work under extreme pressure. In Northern Ireland, Myrtle looks after her husband who has Parkinson’s. She told us that while people may understand the physical side of things, they don’t acknowledge the extra every-day workload that falls to her. Since her husband became ill Myrtle’s household responsibilities have doubled, and she even has to work part time as she is ineligible for Carer’s Allowance.

We at the PDS agree that carers are the UK’s ‘secret service' and a Carers Week survey by YouGov of over 2,000 people shows that we're not alone. Six out of seven people surveyed(86%) believe that carers make a valuable contribution to society, behind only nurses (91%) and firefighters (90%).

We want to hear from people who think their carer is an unsung hero, or who are carers themselves working under pressure. Leave a comment below or join in the discussion on our carers' forum.

Thanks to all the UK’s carers for your hard work – we can’t imagine what would happen without you all.

Steve Ford is Chief Executive of the Parkinson's Disease Society

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Having a carer is very important, they save the NHS a lot of money, by looking after their PwP.
It is vitally important for carer's to have some Time out so may have to rely on a sitting service (if you are lucky enough to have one) or another family member. This time out gives both the PwPs and their carer time apart and something to talk about. when the condition interferes with the relationship causing breakdown, then it is time to finally ask for help. Do not be scared to ask it is your right and you become a "partner" again not the carer. suffice it to say you never stop caring for each other.

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