Looking after someone with a lung condition

Support for carers in Northern Ireland

Under the Carers and Direct Payments Act, you are entitled to a carer’s assessment if you provide ‘regular and substantial’ care for someone.

Ask the social services department of your Health and Social Care Trust (HSCT) for one.

The assessor will look at your individual needs and discuss them with you. The assessment will show which needs are most important, and the risks if you are not given help.

After your assessment, your HSCT will develop a care plan setting out the support and services you need. Trusts can provide services directly to you, or you may be able to choose those services yourself.

I have been told I am eligible for support as a carer. Who will pay for it?

Your HSCT will decide if you should pay for some or all of the services you need. If the HSCT is going to pay in part or in full, it must offer you a direct payment, so you can choose, arrange and pay for the services directly. It can charge you for services, but this is rare.

The person you care for – assessment of their needs

The person you care for can have a community care assessment, but if the HSCT decides that you are meeting all of their support needs – and if you are happy to continue doing so – then the trust is not obliged to provide additional support.

If the HSCT decides that the person you care for is eligible for more support, they can either provide services themselves or provide services through another organisation. Alternatively, they can give the person you care for money to choose and pay for services directly: this is called a direct payment or a personal budget.

Useful contacts in Northern Ireland

Up-to-date information about loans and grants, and details of local councils are available at the nidirect website.

Carers Northern Ireland:  02890 439 843

Carers Trust Northern Ireland:  0779 431 8403

Next: Financial support >

Last medically reviewed: November 2015. Due for review: November 2018

This information uses the best available medical evidence and was produced with the support of people living with lung conditions. Find out how we produce our information. If you’d like to see our references get in touch.