Scottish Government Coronavirus Advice for Unpaid Carers

Information for carers

Anyone providing regular support to a vulnerable friend or relative should be aware of protecting their own health, and the health of those they look after, during the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. 

  • Like everyone, unpaid carers (including young carers) and people being cared for should follow public health advice on how to protect themselves from infection.

As the situation is changing quickly, the guidance may also change, so carers should check regularly to make sure that they are following the latest guidance on coronavirus on the NHS inform website.

  • Carers who do not already have an emergency plan in place may also want to talk with family and friends about who could take over their caring role if they become ill or need to self-isolate – particularly while social work services are under additional pressure during the coronavirus outbreak.

It will also be important to make sure that you have key information about the person you care for easily available – so that anyone taking over their care has all the information they need.

  • If carers and family and friends are unable to provide essential care for someone, they should contact their local social work department.

See the social work department contact details.

See NHS Inform for advice on coronavirus symptoms, precautions to take, and what to do if you think you may have become ill with coronavirus.

Short Breaks Fund

The Short Breaks Fund complements any support provided by local authorities and statutory agencies. Shared Care Scotland and Family Fund administer the fund.

  • The team at Shared Care Scotland are continuing to deliver the fund. They can be contacted on 01383 622462 or by email
  • To help you find suitable short breaks at this time, they have created information on a range of alternative short breaks that can be accessed from home, including phone support services, online forums, online subscriptions and distance learning.
    These are available via their website and social media channels across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
  • If you require help with funding any of these alternative short break options, your local Time to Live partner may be able to assist. You can find who delivers Time to Live in your area using the following link.
  • Family Fund supports low income families raising disabled and seriously ill children and young people. They can provide grants for essential items such as kitchen appliances, clothing, bedding, sensory toys, computers and much more.
  • If you require extra financial support at present the fund is still open for applications. Carers who have applied before can apply online and new applicants can download an application form from their website. For further assistance please contact their telephone helpline: 01904 550055.
  • Family Fund’s Take a Break Fund also supports families / carers of disabled children and young people to take a short break. Information about how to apply and when the fund will open this year can be found on their website.
  • Other support for parent carers can be found here and via parent club.

Young carers

  • The Young Scot young carer package provides a range of tailored leisure and learning opportunities for all young carers aged 11-18 and is accessed through the Young Scot card.
  • Young carers can apply for a Young Scot card on their website and find out more about the Young Carer package.
  • Young Scot is currently reviewing the opportunities in the young carers package with particular focus given to the inclusion of activities which can be carried out whilst social distancing or self-isolating.
  • Young Scot has also been working closely with the Scottish Government to ensure they are providing the most up to date information for young people on COVID-19  and the school closures.
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