Being prepared for an unplanned event is always a good idea. If you look after a friend or family member having a back-up plan is important if something should happen to you which means you are unable to provide the care you would do normally.
We advise all carers to create a “What if..” plan which is a really useful document where you put all the information about your caring role in one place. Should you be unable to care for whatever reason, it’s clear exactly what needs to be done if somebody else needs to take over.
Use your “What if..” plan to help in case of an emergency or unplanned event, such as a sudden illness or accident or travel disruption, for example car/bus broken down.
Thinking ahead and creating a “What if..” plan or reviewing an existing plan can ease anxiety and give you a sense of control.
Things to consider include:
- Details of the name and contact details of the person you look after
- Who you and the person you look after would like to be contacted in an emergency – this might include friends, family or professionals.
- Details of any medication the person you look after is taking.
- Details of any ongoing treatment they need.
- Notes of any important information
Make sure that this information is printed and kept safely to-hand, should it ever be needed. Talk about and share the plan with the person you care for and those named as your emergency contacts.
The Herbert Protocol: additional support for those looking after someone with dementia who may wander
To help we have created a “What if..” template which you can download. We can help you to complete the form and if you would like some support our Carers First team are here to help 0300 303 1555.
Essex Carers Emergency Card Scheme
In Essex, carers can also ask to join the Carers Emergency Card Scheme which is FREE and available to all unpaid carers. It is run by Essex Adult Social Care and will give you peace of mind that if anything happens to you, the person you care for will be contacted to check that their support needs are being met
How does it work?
Carers register with the scheme and provide information about the person they look after (for example, medication) and the names of people who can be contacted in the event of an emergency and who have keys to your home. This information is held by the Essex Adult Social Care Team. If they receive a call that you have been involved in an emergency which is affecting you ability to provide the necessary care, they will take action depending on what has happened to you.
It is important that the individuals you may name as emergency contacts are aware and are also given a copy of this document.
Please contact us if you would like to register your emergency plan centrally.