Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton Constituency, has told the Scottish Government that it must recognise the vital role that family caregivers play in providing care for adults in care homes and supported accommodation.

Baillie made this call during a Scottish Labour debate within the Scottish Parliament which was on recognising the role of family caregivers. The debate successfully resulted in the Scottish Parliament backing this call.

Within her speech, Jackie Baillie highlighted how central family members were to the care that is provided for adults with severe and profound learning disabilities who are in supported accommodation. She has stressed how detrimental removing this care and interaction has been on adults during the Covid-19 pandemic. This is particularly true for adults with Alzheimer’s who can experience a rapid deterioration in their conduction as a result of not receiving this care.

Family caregivers have not been able to provide care during the pandemic as they are viewed as visitors to the homes rather than key workers.

Jackie Baillie MSP said:

“I am delighted that the Scottish Parliament has finally recognised the vital role that family caregivers have in providing care for adult family members.

“In normal times, these family members are central to the care packages that these adults receive. They are active in giving both emotional and physical support and often have a better understanding of the needs of those that they are caring for because of the close family bond that they have.

“It is unacceptable that these caregivers have been dismissed during the pandemic. Not only has the removal of family members from the care setting meant that care providers are struggling with a depleted force, the fact that they are not there has been hugely distressing for those that they care for. This is particularly the case for adults with severe and profound learning disabilities who thrive on structure and continuity.

“The wellbeing and mental health of adults in homes and supported accommodation has been really negatively affected by the removal of family care givers from their daily routines.

“Family caregivers are nothing less than frontline key workers and it is so important that they Scottish Government recognises them as such.”


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