At Northern Devon Healthcare Trust we recognise that carers play an important role – they are a vital source of information about the person, and a vital partner in their care and support.
Unless carers, or people who may become carers, are actively involved from the beginning, a patient’s home situation or discharge plan will not work so well. Besides the support carers can provide to someone, staff should also ensure that carers are getting the right support for their caring role.
We want carers to feel welcome to patient’s appointments and onto the wards and encourage carers to undertake caring tasks if they and the cared for person (patient) want to continue to do so. A patient’s stay, particularly if they have dementia or a learning disability, is often less traumatic if a carer helps plan the stay or supports them at certain times e.g. mealtimes or stressful times, e.g. before a procedure.
The Patient Experience Matron, Deputy Chief Nurse and Facilities Manager are delighted to announce that from today, Thursday 1 October, we are able to provide free parking for carers who are on Devon’s Carers Register when the person that they care for is staying in or visiting North Devon District Hospital.
There are plans to extend free parking in the coming weeks for carers when visiting Bideford Hospital and Barnstaple Health Centre.
During working hours, which is 8.30 -4.30pm, Monday to Friday, the carer will need to take their Devon Carers Alert Card to the information desk on level 2 in the main entrance and they will be provided with a ticket to exit at the barrier.
Out of hours, carers will need to take their Devon Carers Alert Card to the porters lodge inside the main entrance who will provide a ticket to exit the car park. The information desk will request to see their Devon Carers alert card, and the carer will be asked to provide vehicle registration details, the name of the cared-for person and ward they are on. We are also able to provide a hot meal to carers who are supporting a patient during their inpatient stay, meal vouchers will be issued to the wards in the next few days.
As the restaurant is closed to the public these vouchers can be given to the carer to access a hot meal from the ward meal trolleys. If you identify an unpaid carer on the ward and they do not have an alert card please ask if they are registered with Devon Carers and with consent contact the Devon Carers Hospital Services Professional Duty Line: 01392 301391.
For more information about the alert card please visit Devon Carers https://devoncarers.org.uk/information-and-advice/support-for-me/emergency-planning/alert-card/