Carer praises ‘amaz­ing sup­port’ af­ter giv­ing up work to care for hus­band

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE -

A MID­WIFE who had to give up work to care for her se­verely ill hus­band has spo­ken about the im­pact of be­ing a carer as part of Na­tional Car­ers Week.

Janet Lund, from Tyther­ing­ton, be­came a full-time carer for her hus­band Michael, 59, four years ago.

The cou­ple orig­i­nally thought Michael was suf­fer­ing from a mid­dleear in­fec­tion but it did not clear up.

In 2001, doc­tors di­ag­nosed him with mul­ti­ple scle­ro­sis (MS), a neu­ro­log­i­cal con­di­tion which af­fects his brain and spinal cord.

Janet said: “It was a shock, but then things sort of fell into place that had been hap­pen­ing and it made sense.

“He was still able to do things for him­self ini­tially, but it was get­ting to the point where I was mak­ing my­self ill try­ing to jug­gle ev­ery­thing.”

The 52-year-old cares for Michael in ev­ery as­pect, wash­ing and dress­ing him, cut­ting up his food and mak­ing him drinks, as he is no longer able to do it for him­self.

The Tyther­ing­ton Drive res­i­dent also cares for her el­derly in-laws, so finds the help she re­ceives from Cheshire and Warrington Car­ers Trust and the MS So­ci­ety in­valu­able.

She said: “The sup­port we get is amaz­ing, they re­ally are just there for both of us. It’s a mas­sive, mas­sive help.”

NHS Eastern Cheshire Clin­i­cal Com­mis­sion­ing Group (CCG), which plans and buys health­care for more than 200,000 peo­ple, helps to fund ser­vices pro­vided by Cheshire and Warrington Car­ers’ Trust, along with Cheshire East Coun­cil and NHS South Cheshire CCG.

The or­gan­i­sa­tion has en­abled Janet to re­ceive a carer’s bud­get, which she uses to pay for spa and re­lax­ation treat­ments, pro­vid­ing much-needed respite.

Dr Paul Bowen, chair­man of NHS Eastern Cheshire CCG and GP with McIlvride Med­i­cal Prac­tice in Poyn­ton, said: “The work of un­paid car­ers like Janet is ab­so­lutely vi­tal in sup­port­ing the NHS and she de­serves to be recog­nised.

“There are around 21,000 un­paid car­ers in eastern Cheshire whose un­sung work trans­forms the lives of those they look af­ter while re­duc­ing de­mand for hard-pressed health and so­cial care ser­vices.

“I hope Car­ers Week will help high­light the con­tri­bu­tion peo­ple like Janet make to fam­i­lies and com­mu­ni­ties through­out the UK.”

Find out more about Car­ers Week at car­er­sweek.org.

●● Janet Lund with her hus­band Michael

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