National Friendly steps in to help growing number of female carers
Research from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that people in their 50s and 60s have the most caring responsibilities, with one in five providing unpaid care. Older female workers are also twice as likely as men to be informal carers.
Further findings in a parliamentary report show that in 2015 -16, an estimated 345,000 unpaid carers aged 16-64 years in England, predominantly women, left employment to provide care. Working women who have to take career breaks to support a relative may face significant financial pressure.
Wayne Carter, Head of Sales and Marketing at National Friendly, believes that the insurance industry has a role to play in helping to find care solutions to support family members, often women, who may be juggling work, family and caring responsibilities.
"In our experience, one of the biggest problems is a shortage of information facing those families who need to use carers. There is a range of government and local council social services benefits available to qualifying families to help pay for care in their own homes or elsewhere, but navigating these benefits and finding out which may be available is extraordinarily complex, often with differences at a local council level, which merely adds to the problem."
Carter adds, "We offer our members discounted access to Grace Consulting, a helpline which supports those in need to identify which state benefits are readily available, how they can secure help through their GP and district nurses and what is available at a generic level via their local social services adult support units. Accessing this information can make a real difference when it comes to avoiding financial hardship within the family, especially if a member of the family, usually a female, has given up work to take on a voluntary care role. The service is free for those with our care insurance product, Assisted Living Insurance, which is designed to help finance short-term domiciliary care."
David Nugent, Managing Director at Grace Consulting, said, "We are delighted to support National Friendly with this valuable initiative. Our clients tell us that expert guidance on all matters concerning care saves time and stress, and helps achieve the best possible outcomes."
For more information on National Friendly and its care solutions, you can visit their website www.nationalfriendly.co.uk/
Sources/notes to the editor:
Based in the centre of Bristol, National Friendly is a mutual society, with the aim of helping its members to prepare for life's difficulties.
Established in 1868, it has no shareholders and exists to serve the best interests of its 33,400* members.
National Deposit Friendly Society Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.
Its vision is to be a forward-thinking and trusted mutual that meets the health, welfare and protection needs of its members through a portfolio of innovative insurance and savings products.
*As of November 2018.