Surrey Adult Social Care Team Current Special Bulletin

Coronavirus Special Briefing Information

The Impact of COVID-19 on young adult carers

The results of a Carers Trust survey into the impact of coronavirus on young adult carers (YAC) aged 18 to 25 was published in July 2020 and points to a steep decline in the mental health and wellbeing of the hundreds of thousands of young people across the UK who provide unpaid care at home for family members or friends. The results revealed that:

  • 59% of YACs mental health has lowered since coronavirus
  • 78% are more worried about their future
  • 74% are feeling more stressed
  • 69% feel less connected to others
  • 20% report an increase of 30 hours or more in caring
  • 64% spend 10 hours additional caring than pre-COVID
  • 15% now spend over 90 hours caring.

As a result of the survey, there has been an increased call for mental health support.

Action for Carers Surrey is accepting referrals as usual. This autumn they will be resuming face-to-face work with safety procedures, as well as continuing Zoom and phone contact.

Please visit Action for Carers Surrey for further information.  Alternatively, you can contact Action for Carers directly:

Telephone: 0303 040 1234  SMS Text: 07714 075993.  Email:

Sight for Surrey Mask Exemption Card  
Sight for Surrey is fully committed to supporting people in Surrey who are blind, partially sighted, Deaf, deafblind or hard of hearing, especially during these different times where the wearing of a face mask is mandatory in enclosed public spaces.

For people who are Deaf or with a hearing loss and who use lip reading, wearing a face mask can have devastating consequences leaving them unable to understand and communicate with people around them leading to feelings of isolation. 

The charity has heard many stories of Deaf people being abused by members of the public for not wearing face masks.

Sight for Surrey has, therefore, designed a series of exemption cards that explain why individuals are not wearing face masks. They can be printed off and worn or displayed. It is hoped that these will help to protect all the Deaf and hard of hearing people in Surrey from this abuse, as well as relieving the anxiety and pressure for Deaf people.

The passes are available to download.

GOV.UK also has exemption cards which explain the government’s guidance, and which can be downloaded and printed to take out and about or downloaded to a phone.

Macular Society keeps in touch via group calls  
The sight loss charity, the Macular Society, now offers a range of new telephone and online support services after face-to-face meetings of its peer support groups across the UK were suspended following the coronavirus outbreak.

The telephone group meetings are run by the charity’s regional managers or support group volunteers and are open to anyone with macular disease, their families or friends.

If you would like to call in to a group, or for more information please contact Stella Black:  Telephone: 01306 644 908  Mobile: 07494 467 980  

New NHS remote monitoring service increases support for people with dementia  
A new NHS service that uses award-winning technology is being launched across Surrey to remotely monitor the health of people with dementia and their carers during the coronavirus outbreak.

The new, free of charge Technology Integrated Health Management (TIHM) Monitoring Service is offered by local NHS provider, Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, smart home monitoring provider, Howz, Surrey County Council and Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership.

Further information about the service, as well as professional and self-referrals are available online from Surrey and Borders Partnership

Support from Headway Surrey  
Evidence is emerging that people who are surviving COVID-19 are experiencing acquired brain damage and neurological changes to memory, mood, behaviour, brain fatigue, information processing, decision making etc.

In response to this, Headway Surrey is opening a new Zoom Support Group, which will be in addition to existing online support services.

For more information, please contact Headway Surrey:

Telephone: 01483 454433  Email:

More care, companionship and support for Surrey residents  
COVID-19 meant that Crossroads Care Surrey needed to find new ways to support carers and their families when they could no longer provide visiting care in the home for ten weeks due to the outbreak of coronavirus. The charity did just that, finding a solution for their community with outreach support through befriending calls and a shopping and prescription collection service for anyone unable to leave their home because of the need to shield or self-isolate due to age, illness or a caring responsibility.

Crossroads Care Surrey is pleased to announce that they will be able to continue to help those most vulnerable in Surrey, thanks to new funding from The National Lottery Community Fund, HM Government, Carers Trust and the Community Foundation for Surrey, supporting people with befriending and community outreach services like shopping and prescription collections.

For further information or to access support, please visit Crossroads Care Surrey Alternatively, Crossroads Care Surrey can be contacted via:

Telephone: 01372 869 970  Email:

Online activities to help people living with dementia in self-isolation  
Living with dementia at any time brings everyday challenges for the person and the people around them. Coronavirus has made daily life much harder.

The Alzheimer’s Society has produced five online activities that people living with dementia can do from home.

Queen Elizabeth for Disabled People Transport Information Hub Service back open  
Queen Elizabeth Foundation for Disabled People (QEF) is pleased to confirm their Transport Information Hub Service is back up and running with a focus on traveling safely on public transport as we emerge from lockdown.

This is a pilot scheme covering Surrey and South London - originally aimed at providing accessible transport advice for those no longer driving or unable to drive. Information around community transport, travel concessions, accessible journey planning and blue badges is available. To reflect the changing messages around public transport, advice is now also available around safe capacity on transport, COVID-19 safety measures, face coverings, and support for vulnerable people.

Funded by the Department of Transport, the project recognises how lack of transport options can result in isolation and aims to signpost individuals to groups and services that provide support.

Before the pandemic, tailored advice was given to groups or clients in community settings around Surrey. To ensure safety, support can still be provided over the phone or through video conferencing. For example, QEF recently provided a Zoom Question and Answer session to a learning disability group around accessing public transport safely after lockdown.

Further information is available from information QEF   Alternatively, please contact Amanda Beck:  Mobile: 07780 224771  Email:

Surrey Carers Flu Jab Voucher now available    
Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership is launching a campaign to encourage carers to have the flu jab as early as possible this flu season. The flu season is fast approaching and generally lasts from October to March. The Government has announced the most comprehensive flu programme in history to be rolled out this winter to help protect the NHS and Surrey Heartlands is keen for Surrey’s carers to get their vaccine as early as possible.

This year more than ever, by taking up the offer of the flu vaccination, carers may help reduce pressure on the NHS through the coming winter months.

Carers who look after someone who is elderly or disabled can ask for a flu jab at their GP practice or take a Surrey Carers Flu Jab Voucher to their nearest participating community pharmacy. Surrey Flu Carer Vouchers are available through all frontline carers’ support services. The vouchers provide community pharmacies with the assurance that the carer is known to carers services here in Surrey and is therefore entitled to a free vaccination.

Professionals and all agencies, please help spread the messages to all Surrey carers, who may be unaware that they are eligible for a free flu voucher or of the risks to themselves and the person they care for if they don’t protect themselves with the vaccine.

Additionally, keep an eye out for the social media messages and share these where possible using the hashtag #SurreyCarersFluVoucher.

Further information about the Surrey Carers Flu Voucher scheme is available from  Action for Carers

Surrey County Council appoints new Executive Director of Children, Families and Lifelong Learning  
Surrey County Council (SCC) has appointed Rachael Wardell as its new Executive Director of Children, Families and Lifelong Learning.

She takes up the post in early December, joining from her current role as Director of Children, Schools and Families for the London Borough of Merton.

Previously Rachael spent five years as Director of Children’s Services and Director of Adult Social Services at West Berkshire Council, and also held posts at Wokingham Borough Council and Ofsted.

Surrey Heath CCG Public Meeting and AGM invitation  
The Surrey Heath Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM) is taking place on Wednesday, 23rd September, 2020, 9.30am - 10.30am. 

As well as the AGM, attendees can also find out more about:

  • How the CCG has worked with partners to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • How the CCG is supporting the mental health and wellbeing for the local community
  • How the CCG has developed new adult community health services.

The Annual General Meeting will also feature a Question and Answer section. To submit a question, please email no later than Wednesday, 16 September, 2020.

This year’s event will be hosted virtually. A meeting link will be sent to you prior to the event with instructions of how to join. If you would like to attend, please register using the details below:

Eventbrite  Mobile: 07909 936443  Email:

Surrey Welfare Rights Unit online training  
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been necessary for Surrey Welfare Rights Unit (SWRU) to cancel all face-to-face courses for the time being.  In the meantime, they are developing online training.

Some courses are already available from Surrey Welfare Rights Unit including:

  • Surplus earnings in Universal Credit (15 September,10am)

Addlestone Community Centre open    
Addlestone Community Centre has now been partially opened to those users whose attendees and activities are safe under current COVID-19 guidelines. Full details are available from  Addlestone Community Centre

If you have any questions about use of the centre, please email:

Additionally, Addlestone Community Centre will be taking part in Runnymede Borough Council’s Living Well Week, from 21-27 September 2020.

It is proposed to open the centre every day throughout Living Well Week and invite people to come and view the centre and some of the activities that take place here. Addlestone Community Centre is, therefore, asking those groups that are currently operating in the centre to advise if they would be happy for people to view their activity, either through a door or to enter the room for a brief period.

Addlestone Community Centre is also planning to create a short video promoting the centre and its activities and are seeking permission to video a short clip of centre activities to be included in this promotional video.

Groups can advise about the above by contacting Ian Lee:  Telephone: on 07831 279374  Email:

Headway Surrey – be aware of charity scam  
Headway Surrey has received reports of someone fraudulently wearing a Headway lanyard pretending to be a member of Headway and asking for food and money. Headway Surrey staff and volunteers are not going door to door and are not collecting in the streets.

If you are approached, please call Headway Surrey on 01483 455225, and provide as many details as possible.  Alternatively you can contact Action Fraud or report online via  Surrey Police

Ground-breaking community mental health service offers holistic support    
People experiencing a wide, and possibly complex, range of mental health and emotional well-being issues are to benefit from the extension of a new holistic community mental health service, following a successful pilot.

The new service helps adults to access support and guidance on a broad range of issues that are affecting their mental health, such as problems with housing, employment, social isolation, relationships and debt. This is in addition to also providing crucial support for both mental and physical health problems.

The service was first piloted with GP practices in Primary Care Networks covering North Guildford, Banstead, Chertsey and Ottershaw. It has now been extended to include a further seven Integrated Mental Health Services (GPIMHS) teams, including four in Surrey Heartlands (East Guildford, North West Surrey, North Tandridge and Leatherhead), with plans for more teams going live across Surrey Heartlands this year.

To ensure a more holistic approach, people referred to the service receive extended appointments at their GP practice with NHS and specialist third sector mental health experts. This provides time to explore a person’s needs and draw up a plan of action connecting them with different services to provide support. Improving access to therapies, physical health checks and specialist pharmacists are just some of the wider expertise people will be able to access through their GP practice.

Further information is available from Surrey and Borders Partnership

New arrangements for Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) – Learners’ Single Point of Access      
As the first step, in what will be a number of positive changes over the course of the next few months, a new multi-disciplinary team, including Educational Psychologists, SEND and health specialists and our specially trained contact centre staff, have come together to create a more holistic service and to foster a more inclusive approach.

The new system which fosters learning and achievement, contributes to an improved quality of life and helps set young people on course for a successful adulthood, and these aims are at the heart of the new Learners' Single Point of Access.

The ‘L-SPA’, as it’s become known, has many of the same features and benefits of the Children’s SPA introduced last year for children and families in need of support. It provides a co-ordinated response to families and professionals, helping to identify a wide range of support for children’s learning and achievement.

The next development will be a new professional helpline, initially available every day, Monday to Friday from 9am – 5pm but will soon extend its hours to 8am - 6pm. Further information about SEND is available from Surrey Local Offer

Submitting an article for the ASC Information and Engagement Team Briefing  
If you would like us to include an article on behalf of your organisation in the next edition, please email:

Please note that we are unable to include attachments when we circulate the briefing, so please ensure that any documents that you wish to reference are uploaded to your own organisation’s website or a partner website.