Hilary Fairfield (Regional Delivery Manager for the South, MND Association)

The Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Association has good evidence about the impact of MND on carers, and we are continually reviewing the type and level of support that we offer them to relieve some of the stress and pressures of this demanding role.  The Carers’ Alert Thermometer (CAT) is proving to be a useful tool for identifying carers’ needs, enabling us to increase our support, if necessary, and signpost the carer to other services.  We are aiming to roll the use of the CAT tool out more widely across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, to help us support and reach out to even more carers in the future.”

John (Former carer)

John, a former carer

“I am a former Carer who looked after an elderly relative from advent of disability through to end of life which pretty much encompasses most situations likely to arise. Whilst I cannot promise to relieve your individual situation I can offer a pointer to a service that was NOT available at the time I was coping with the end of life of my “loved one”. For far too long carers have been left to “get on with it”, but now there is a new way of addressing the difficult situation carers can/do find themselves in with Carers’ Alert Thermometer (CAT). 

Due to my involvement in the work at Edge Hill University I was one of many carers invited to contribute to the design of the CAT. It has been designed to keep questions to a minimum, reducing your time needed to answer, whilst identifying any needs you have and provide suggestions of services or sources of support that would be best suited to your situation. I recommend that all those working with carers explore the use of the CAT in their work and that carers tell others about it. The CAT, resources and information about its development can all be found on this website.”

Julian Hampton-Matthews (Oncology Social Worker) and Lynda Appleton (Research Nurse), Clatterbridge Cancer Centre

“Clatterbridge Cancer Centre, Wirral, is currently piloting the Carers’ Alert Thermometer (CAT) with carers of patients in the palliative care setting. The CAT is providing a systematic approach to the identification, assessment and management of carer’s holistic needs and will help to ensure that the care and support offered to individuals is personalised, consistent and tailored to their priorities and wishes. The care planning section of the CAT ensures that actions, plans and goals are meaningful and responsive to the changing needs of the person, and makes the review of progress explicit and clear. Assisting carers to manage their own needs will positively impact on the patient’s experience, as the CAT emphasises the patient-carer relationship as an integrated whole.”


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