Gwenda Thomas outlines proposed Carers’ Strategies (Wales) Measure.

Deputy Minister for Social Services, Gwenda Thomas AM, has outlined proposals to improve the lives of carers through the Welsh Assembly Government’s proposed Carers’ Strategies (Wales) Measure.

The main purposes of the proposed Measure, which stems from the Welsh Assembly’s Carers Legislative Competence Order (LCO), are to:

• place a duty on the NHS and local authorities in Wales to work jointly and in consultation with carers and their representatives, to prepare and publish a strategy setting out how they will work together to provide information and advice to carers;

• ensure that carers are consulted about the provision of services to carers or the person they care for;

• place a requirement on the NHS and local authorities to implement the strategy and to provide information and advice to carers free of charge; and,

• designate an NHS organisation as the lead authority for overseeing the preparation and publication of each strategy.

Commenting on the Measure’s features Gwenda Thomas said: “I am delighted to introduce this proposed Measure. I know and appreciate the enormous contribution that carers make to the people they care for, and more broadly to our communities.

“This proposed Measure is the first time we have used the new powers available under our Carers LCO and builds on our ‘One Wales’ commitment. It addresses some of the most important concerns that carers and carers’ organisations have shared with me over the years.”

Welcoming the Deputy Minister’s announcement Roz Williamson, Director Carers Wales said: “Carers often have to struggle to get the help they need and they have fought long and hard for greater support and recognition. The Measure recognises the true value of the contribution that the 350,000 unpaid carers make to society in Wales. It will be an important step in driving forward the changes that are needed to ensure that carers get the practical and emotional help they need.”

The Measure will now be subject to the Assembly’s scrutiny process. For more information please visit:

Fish oil “may prevent or delay onset of psychotic disorder”

An article in the Archives of General Psychiatry has claimed that taking a daily fish oil capsule can help stave off mental illness in those at high risk of psychotic disorder.

A three-month course of the supplement given to 81 individuals by a team of international researchers from Austria, Australia and Switzerland found that fish oil appeared to be as effective as drugs as it cut the rate of psychotic illness like schizophrenia by a quarter.
Researchers believe omega-3 in fish oil has beneficial effects in the brain.

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