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09 February 2024

Supporting unpaid carers in the NHS and social care

Half-day conference examined the right to a care supporter

Hand on the handle of an open door into a room with a bed in it

The Unit hosted a half-day conference on 9 February 2024 to talk about the right to a care supporter and what this might look like in health and social care settings. The conference, ‘Supporting unpaid carers in the NHS and social care’, was a hybrid event held at the Strand campus and saw 65 attendees come together to share their thoughts on the topic.

Updates were given by Dr Kritika Samsi and Jo Brown about the study about the right to a care supporter currently underway in the HSCWRU.

Lesley Goodburn (Experience of Care Lead – National Clinical Programmes) from NHS England came to discuss the Draft National Health and Care Partner Policy which is currently under consultation. She highlighted the need for leadership and culture change to make this policy work. People are invited to contribute to the consultation process before the deadline of 31 March 2024, by contacting Lesley directly on

A panel discussion with Nuno Santos Lopes (Director of Care Services, Nightingale Hammerson), Helen Wildbore (Care Rights UK) and Sue Last (family carer) all discussed the implementation of such a policy in practice and the necessity of having this in place.

We were also joined by Ruth Eley and Janis Cottee from tide (together in dementia everyday) who talked about the value of involving people with lived experience in research and campaigning and how tide has supported Janis with this.

Dr Caroline Emmer de Albuquerque Green closed the day by emphasising the importance of relationship-based care, recognising the connections which make us human and the value these have for our health and wellbeing.

In this story

Samsi 160

Senior Research Fellow

Caroline Green

Institute for Ethics in AI, University of Oxford