South East London carer
Meet #YourPrimaryCare Team
Welcome to your primary care team. As the first point of contact in the healthcare system, think of us as the ‘front door’ of the NHS. As a carer, you face challenging and complex situations everyday and your primary care team is here to support you with these. Your primary care team consists of general practitioners, practice nurses, and a host of other professionals to support you with your day-to-day.
If you call or book an appointment with your local surgery or GP, you may be seen by someone else first. This is because they’re the best person to initially help you, and can refer you to other specialists if you need it.
Don’t forget to inform your GP of your status as a carer – they can support you with extra time and flexible appointments to work around your schedule. We also recommend participating in a free carer’s assessment. This will assess your situation and allow us to support you as a carer, and you may be entitled to extra support.
Your local social services team can provide more information on extended breaks and respite care – find yours here.
By providing health promotion, counselling, and education, practice nurses can help to support you in most aspects of the patient care and treatment system. They also provide care on multiple levels such as treating small injuries, providing vaccines, and helping patients manage long-term conditions such as diabetes, asthma, dementia and Alzheimer’s.
General Practitioner (GP)
Mental Health Practitioner
Mental health practitioners based in GP practices provide quicker access to mental health support for patients. These qualified practitioners assess patients, identifying and treating common mental health problems – they may also refer patients to appropriate specialist services. Mental health practitioners interview patients and identify areas where the person you are caring for you may wish to change how they feel, think or behave. Mental health practitioners support patients to manage and understand their emotions and feelings, improving sleep patterns, general mental wellbeing and health.
Mental health practitioners can also provide support for you as a carer in regulating and maintaining your own wellbeing and mental health by listening to your concerns, providing additional support and guidance on self-care or a referral. These practitioners understand the challenges which can arise due to the demands of caring for another adult, and can assist you to maintain your mental and physical wellbeing.
Social Prescribing Link Worker
Link workers connect patients, and their carers, to achieve greater control of their own health by connecting them with non-medical support to improve well-being and mental health. Patients suffering from long-term conditions, mental health issues, loneliness, or have complex social needs are seen by link workers to find ways to improve their well-being. By prescribing social activities such as arts and crafts, group learning, and friend-making sessions, link workers aim to enrich and improve patients’ lives and wellbeing, and continue to track and review their progress and improvements.
Social prescribing link workers can also help you, as a carer, if you are struggling with any long-term conditions, mental health issues, or have complex social needs, supporting both your own wellbeing. They can also provide advice and support with your responsibilities as a carer, and can signpost you to helpful resources to assist you further.