GP Surgeries - Professionals

Northamptonshire Carers has been working with GP practices across the county for more than 10 years.  The key aim was and still is that practices identify patients who are carers and if appropriate refer them on to us.  Since we began this work thousands of carers have accessed our wide range of services who may otherwise never have heard of us.


In addition to support groups, one to one carers assessment and support, choirs and befriending etc etc we also work with the Memory Hubs and provide groups for people with specific medical conditions such as COPD and heart failure.  These groups are unique in that they offer a social group, with activities, speakers and lunch together with a clinical input.  A medical professional is available to offer information and advice when requested at these condition specific groups.  Please contact the office for further information as some of these groups are open to all whilst others need a clinical referral.


We support the work in GP practices via this website and by running workshops in person and online.  A member of staff can come to you and make a presentation at PLT and /or PPG.  If you would like to book in a presentation/workshop please email or ring – contact details below.  (NB. Some notice is required as PLT is on the same day and time across the county)!.  If you have any questions/queries regarding carers or the Awards scheme please leave us a message and we will get back to you as soon as possible.


As well as the benefits that our services offer the patient the outcomes from Carers Trust Survey shows that carers who are supported are less likely to request GP appointments for help with stress and anxiety associated with their caring role.

See “Outcomes” link below.


We also run the GP Accreditation scheme.  Currently 47 practices have attained accreditation with 2 having achieved Gold Plus – congratulations Long Buckby and Parklands.

Details of the Investors in Carers GP Standard Accreditation

The scheme aims to:

  • Improve identification of and support available to Carers
  • Acknowledge work undertaken to support Carers by Northamptonshire GP teams
  • Provide an accredited framework for GP teams within which to develop services and good practice

Modelled on similar schemes operating in other parts of the UK, it is hoped that this may become part of a nationally recognised Investors in Carers Standard and now forming part of GP contracts.

There are 4 levels of attainment:

  1. Bronze         2.Silver         3.Gold          4.Gold Plus

The Bronze level evidence can be submitted at any time and signed off by a team member.  For Silver and above surgeries can submit evidence for consideration by the accreditation panel which is made up of representatives of Carers, the Unitary Authorities, NHS and ourselves. Accreditation will be valid for two years, after which further evidence will be required to maintain the award.

Carers often remain unaware of what help is available to them and the person they look after, which can result in crisis. Achieving the GP Investors in Carers Standard accreditation will help surgeries to realise the vital role they can play and understand how, with Northamptonshire Carers help, they can provide the best possible support for Carers and ultimately improve the life of their patients.

Mark Major, CEO of Northamptonshire Carers

We know that Carers’ health can be negatively affected as a result of caring so it is essential that Carers are identified by their GP surgeries so they can be offered help and support. It is recognised that carers do not easily come forward, and that GP’s and their teams are in the best possible position to identify carers at all points in their caring life.

The contribution of carers is vital to the delivery of both health and social care and to the wider economy, and GPs and their teams are in an ideal position to help and support carers.

Professor Nigel Sparrow - Chair, Professional Development Board, Royal College of General Practitioners

The contribution of carers is vital to the delivery of both health and social care and to the wider economy, and GPs and their teams are in an ideal position to help and support carers.

About 6000 people take on the role of caring every day. We know that carers’

health suffers as a result of caring so it is really important that we are able to identify

carers so that we can provide much needed help and support.

Personal continuing relationship-based care is fundamental to our role as GPs. The

relationship between carer and GP practice is a special one and should be recognised as a partnership in care. The guide supports the continuing education of GPs so that doctors can more easily identify patient carers and be aware of their needs. We hope it will lead to tangible results and new ways of working within the primary healthcare team but perhaps most importantly, it will put carers at the top of the health agenda where they rightfully belong.

Links to Resources

Link to the 2023 Presentation
Link to Outcomes
IIC Docs  Bronze Silver Gold Gold Plus


Who do we contact for further information?

[email protected]


Mobile:  07785 295429


Office: 01933 677907 option: 1


When can we apply for Accreditation?

If you are applying for the Bronze level – anytime.  For all other stages March or September.  Silver and above will be looked at by our Accreditation Panel consisting of a carer, a health professional, social services and Northamptonshire Carers

How long is the Award valid?

For 2 years then you would need to complete the Audit form or re apply for the appropriate level.

Can we go straight for Silver if we have the numbers?

No.  You need to progress through the levels, mainly because they do build on each other.  It would be impossible to achieve silver and gold without putting “Bronze” systems in place.


What if we just can’t achieve the numbers involved?

Our experience is that the numbers are easily achievable, given that at least 10% of your practice population are carers and that number is growing.  Please get in touch and ask for advice and suggestions.  We can offer advice from previous applications and practices across the county.

What do you mean by “best practice” and examples of excellence when it comes to carers?

This is really applicable at Gold and Gold plus levels where we are asking you to show us what you have done to support carers in your practice population.  This can vary by practice as areas can be very different.  Practices would need to look at specific needs in their area e.g. do you have an aging population?; do you have a lot of people with chronic health conditions?  Etc etc.  Again get in touch and we will support with ideas and suggestions.