Call the NHS Choices Carers Direct helpline on 0300 123 1053 if you need help with your caring role and want to talk to someone about what options are available to you. If you are busy at certain times of day, you can send them a message to ask them to call you back for free at a time that is convenient to you.
These services are available for people living in or caring for someone in England.
Seven days a week
The helpline is open from 9am to 8pm Monday to Friday, and from 11am to 4pm, at weekends. The helpline is closed on bank holidays. Calls are free from landlines and mobiles within the UK.
If you have a question about caring you can ask it using their online enquiry form. They ill normally respond within 24 hours of you submitting your enquiry.
Online Carers Assessment also available.
If you want to ask a question while browsing the Carers Direct website or you need help finding information, you can use the webchat service to talk to an adviser live online. The webchat service is available between 9am and 6pm Monday to Friday.
They can send you brief information by text message (SMS). For example, if you’d like to know the details of your local carers’ centre, just call or email the helpline and they can send you the information by text message.
If you want to send in your enquiry in writing, post it to Carers Direct, PO Box 27079, Glasgow, G3 9EJ.
The helpline advisers can give you information to help you make decisions about your personal support needs and the needs of the person you’re looking after.
This information includes assessments, benefits, direct payments, individual budgets, time off and maintaining, leaving or going back to work or education.
The helpline staff will tell you how to complain if anything goes wrong with any of the services you use or put you in touch with your local authority or NHS services.
Local and specialist help
Their helpline advisers can put you in touch with specialist national or local sources of help, including social care, healthcare and self-help networks and resources.
The Carers Direct helpline doesn’t provide personal financial, medical or legal advice and doesn’t provide casework, advocacy, representation, counselling or emotional support. But their advisers can help you get in touch with people who do provide these services.
Language Line translation
They use Language Line, a telephone translation and interpreting service that has access to more than 170 languages. This three-way conferencing facility enables their helpline advisers to communicate through a trained interpreter, making Carers Direct accessible to many people whose first language isn’t English.
Text Relay and Typetalk
Deaf, deafblind, hard of hearing and speech-impaired people who use a textphone can contact Carers Direct on the textphone/minicom number 0300 123 1004. Alternatively, you can use the Text Relay service sometimes referred to as Typetalk. This is the UK’s text to voice relay service. To use the service you simply type a prefix before the telephone number you want to call (18001 if you’re calling from a textphone, 18002 from a telephone and 18000 for emergency numbers).
To contact Carers Direct from a textphone via the Text Relay Service you should call 18001 0300 123 1053. There is no charge for using this service. For more information on Text Relay, please contact 0800 7311 888 or visit the Text Relay website.
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