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We wanted to know what's most important to carers and their families so that we can commission services that offer the right support.

NHS Bradford district and Craven clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and Bradford Council work together to commission a carers’ support service to improve the experiences of carers and support their vital contribution.

The role of unpaid carers is estimated to contribute over £900 million to the health and care economy in Bradford district and Craven.

The service has been recently recommissioned and it was recognised that the experiences of carers in the area could inform the recommissioning process.

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We worked with the People’s Board to create an engagement strategy for this process, report on the project’s findings and take part in the procurement panel when services were being recommissioned.

Throughout June and July 2018, the CCGs and Bradford Council carried out an engagement project to hear the views and experiences of local carers.You can read the report here and further information in the appendices can be found here.

Around 450 carers took part, telling us about what matters most to them, what challenges they face and what helps them keep going. 

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This included a survey, which was promoted through social media, the council and CCGs websites, in email newsletters from Voluntary and Community Sector organisations and commissioning partners. It was also featured in the local media.  

Outreach sessions were also conducted at the Airedale Shopping Centre in Keighley and the Oastler market in Bradford. Stakeholders involved in supporting carers were consulted; including service providers and professionals from a range of health and social care backgrounds. 

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This insight is being used to develop the support service for carers across our district, for example:

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The themes which emerge from this engagement echo the findings of similar surveys carried out locally or nationally, including Carers UK’s national State of Caring report, which highlighted that nationally half of unpaid carers expect their quality of life to get worse over the next year. The report is also helping inform work to support carers as part of the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership.

The process has recognised that we need to do things differently to improve the health and wellbeing of carers across Bradford district and Craven. We have now commissioned a new carers support service, using the insights gained from the engagement process, which is due to start in April 2019 and you can see the press release here and coverage in the local media here.

Reflections from the People's Board:

People’s Board member, Claire Weaver, has written a blog post about her early impressions on joining the People's Board and what it was like to be part of the procurement process for the new carers contract. You can read about Claire's reflections on the People's Board blog

West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership - Carers in primary care event 2018 - you said, we did

In 2018, the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership held an event to find out what matters to carers. The findings from this event were intended to improve outcomes for carers in primary care.

You can now read about the findings from this event in the 'you said, we did' report

Find more ways to get involved here.

Take part in our engagement activities and consultations here.

Discover more details on what engagement work we are doing here.

Or find out how you are also helping us make a difference to improve health services here.