Unpaid carers who look after a friend or family member on an informal basis can get free PPE from the city council to help them carry out their caring responsibilities safely.
If you help someone out informally, you might not think of yourself as a carer – but if you assist someone who could not manage without your support, then you are a carer, even if you only help out from time to time.
Carers help in lots of different ways – for example, they might deal with doctors and social workers, finances and letters, or collect shopping, do the housework, offer a listening ear or help with personal care. You don’t have to live with someone to be their carer.
Now new guidance from the Government means that informal carers, who don’t live with the person they care for, can claim free PPE (personal protective equipment) to help guard against the spread of coronavirus.
Age UK has volunteered to help the council distribute PPE to those informal carers who need it.
Carers will be able to access masks, aprons, gloves and hand sanitiser and - if they provide personal care – visors, too.
The service will also be offering free PPE to young carers under the age of 18, whether they live with the person they care for or not.
Deputy city mayor Cllr Sarah Russell, who leads on social care, said: “Informal carers often don’t identify themselves as such – but if you regularly help someone out, then you’re a carer, and you can access this service to get some free PPE.
“At the moment, the advice is that if you’re an adult carer who lives with the person you are caring for, you don’t need to wear PPE unless advised to do so by a healthcare professional.
But if you help someone out occasionally, then this new service is for you, and is designed to help protect some of our most vulnerable members of society.”
To access the PPE, contact Leicester Carers’ Support Service on 0116 222 0538 from 9am-5pm Monday to Friday. Free PPE will be made available until at least the end of June 2021.
For more information, see www.leicester.gov.uk/carers
More information on the good hygiene practices we all need to be following can be found at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus and https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance
Leicester City Council News 11/03/21