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News - 27 January 2012

Carers 'missing out on support'

An Ipsos MORI survey of 386 carers for Macmillan Cancer Support suggests 49% have no support of any kind.

Just 5% have had a carers' assessment by their local authority to see what assistance they could get.

Macmillan said the survey results showed how "unsupported" the 1.1m carers of people with cancer are.

Almost half of the carers reported they experienced mental health problems such as stress, anxiety and depression, and one in eight (13%) said they experienced physical health problems such as sleep and digestive problems.

One in seven (15%) reported financial issues such as spending more on things like travel to hospital or giving up work.

Ciarán Devane, chief executive of Macmillan Cancer Support, said:
"The statutory sector must increase awareness and uptake of Carers' Assessments. Both health and social care professionals need to be signposting cancer carers for assessments."

David Rogers, chair of the Local Government Association's Community Wellbeing Board, said:
"As this report highlights, the sad reality is that many carers don't recognise themselves as such and fail to seek the support to which they are rightly entitled, and which is widely available through their local authority."

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