The top tips for practice sets out the important messages from carers for how social workers can best relate to them.
- Come prepared, having read the notes
- Be honest, show empathy and listen carefully Be friendly and professional so I can trust and have confidence in you
- Explain what a carers assessment is (that it’s about my needs, not an assessment of my caring ability)
- Prioritise the person I care for and make sure you listen to them
- Find out about the situation on a bad day – to understand fluctuating needs
- See me as an asset, part of a support network helping to support the person I care for
- Be knowledgeable of services and suggest options that might help
- Talk about what can be done, rather than what can’t
- See beyond me as just a carer
- Give me a contact number and a name of a person I can get hold of
- Write a summary of what has happened so other people can prepare themselves before visiting
- Appear to be, or be in a rush Use jargon or buzzwords (in writing or speaking)
- Make assumptions about what I like or can do Be afraid of saying “I’ll get back to you as I don’t know the answer”
- Make promises you can’t keep
- ‘Signpost’ me endlessly with no result – help me use the information that you can give me.