Here are some ideas that some GP surgeries in the county have used to help them identify carers – why not try them in your surgery? Or let us know if you have your own examples of best practice to share.

1. Flu vaccine clinics. We know that this is a busy time for surgeries but we also know that carers often accompany the person they care for to a flu clinic. If a carer is identified they can be offered a flu vaccine and the surgery can be paid for it. Several surgeries have asked volunteers from their patient participation group to attend the clinic and identify carers in the waiting room, giving them forms for carers to complete at the time. Others have done special displays in the waiting room to highlight carers and the desire of the surgery to be told about a caring role.

You could:
• Use the pdf Waiting Room Screen (151 KB) to highlight caring
• Display our pdf Carer leaflet and self-referral form (1.42 MB)
• Distribute new pdf Carers Welcome Pack (75 KB)

2. Remind staff to remember carers. Staff have a lot of different things to think about, so small reminders can make a big difference. One surgery made yellow stars to remind staff to ‘think carer’ and placed these in strategic places around the surgery, on computers, desks and in reception.

You could:
• Place our pdf 'Remember Carers' Postcards (153 KB) in prominent positions around the surgery
• Remind staff at team meetings to remember carers
• Make sure all staff, including those new to the team, have a copy of our information for staff: pdf Carers and health: GP surgeries make all the difference (153 KB) .

3. Carers coffee morning. The patient group at Parkfield surgery in Potters Bar secured initial funding to start a coffee morning six times a year for carers. They joined with two local surgeries, Annandale and Highview to run this and it has been running for over 18 months supporting local carers. They have been supported by local organisations, including Carers in Hertfordshire, to offer useful and relevant information as well as an opportunity to meet other local carers.