£3 million extra for Welsh mental health carers

Dr Brian Gibbons, Assembly Minister for Heath and Social Services, pledged an extra £3 million yesterday to help support carers of people with mental health illnesses in Wales.

The money comes as part of a new £76 million package that is aimed at both improving and reducing the cost of service provision for older people, disabled people, and those that care for them, and is in addition to the £45 million increase in funding that came in 2006/07.

Health and Social Services Minister Dr Brian Gibbons said: “The package I have announced today means the same groups of people will benefit and that the finance made available was greater than was initially planned. It will lead to a further reduction in home care charges which our initial proposal was intended to achieve and will make substantial improvements in the lives of many people who use local authority services, and their carers.”

Bill Walden-Jones, Chief Executive of Welsh mental health charity Hafal, stated: “Carers of people with severe mental illness have specific needs that cannot be met in the general care services. The Welsh Assembly Government has recognised this in part in the National Service Framework which prioritises workforce support and carer empowerment. This money will hopefully go part of the way on enabling them to deliver on those standards.”

For more information about the new package, go to: The National Assembly website.

For more information about the Welsh Carers Strategy, click here.

For more information about legal rights for carers, click here.