3. Other considerations
3.1 Unpaid carers
Where the client has family, friends or neighbours who provide regular unpaid care, it may be appropriate to signpost them to the current guidance from NHS Inform regarding what they can do to protect their own health, and that of those they care for, during the COVID-19 outbreak. There is also dedicated information on the Scottish Government website for unpaid carers on COVID-19. Given the spread of the virus, it is likely that some unpaid carers may not be able to continue in their caring role. This may require the need to adjust support for individuals through formal (services) or informal means (e.g. other family or friends). Where carers and family and friends are unable to provide essential care for someone, they should contact their local social work department.
3.2 Personal Assistants
Where a person employs a personal assistant to deliver care and support, it will be particularly important to have considered contingency plans. These should include arrangements to adjust support and draw on other formal (services) or informal support mechanisms (e.g. other family or friends) in the case of illness or self-isolation of one or more personal assistants. While such plans should already be in place, it is important to revisit them in light of COVID-19.
Clear communication mechanisms should be in place so that both employer and personal assistant are aware when either is self-isolating or experiencing symptoms.