Carers in the most financial need experience the worst social isolationÂ according to the results of a survey.
In the Personal Social Services Survey of Adult Carers in England 2016-17 NHS Digital questioned nearly 56,000 carers registered with local authorities in England.
Almost 40% of carers who reported the most serious financial difficulties admitted they felt socially isolated, compared with only 10% of those who reported no money worries.
The Carers Allowance benefit amounts to Â£62.70 per week, while data from the charity Carers UK claims about twoÂ million people give up work at some point in their lives to care for loved ones with disabilitiesÂ or illnesses.
The charityâ€™s director of policy and public affairs Emily Holzhausen said: â€˜Often, those looking after loved ones have no choice but to give up activities that would make caring less lonely when it becomes hard to make ends meet.
â€˜Our own research shows that 42% carers who were struggling financially had to make up for the shortfall by cutting back on seeing friends and family.â€™
The NHS Digital reportâ€™s authors claimed financial difficulties caused by caring responsibilities are the only aspect of a carerâ€™s life shown to have a statistically significant effect on every question asked.
As well as social isolation, 76% admitted their role left them â€˜feeling tiredâ€™ while 64% said it had caused them to experience â€˜disturbed sleepâ€™ patterns.
Additional statistics show:
Responding to the results, chairÂ of the Local Government Associationâ€™s Community Wellbeing BoardÂ Izzi Seccombe said: â€˜Unpaid carers play an invaluable role in looking after those with care and support needs, and are estimated to save the economy Â£132 billion a year.
â€˜Without the incredible work of carers, social care and the NHS would collapse.â€™
She claimed underfundingÂ of adult social care had limited councilsâ€™ ability to provide supportÂ to carers, and added she hoped the link between financial problems and social isolation would be addressed in the governmentâ€™s upcoming Carers Strategy.
reproduced courtesy of RCNI -Â https://rcni.com/primary-health-care/newsroom/news/financial-hardship-most-likely-to-make-carers-lonely-93176
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