Healthwatch Norfolk – Experiences of Carers of Adults with Serious Mental Illness (SMI)

Posted by: SARAH - Posted on:

Healthwatch Norfolk is currently working with the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) to find out more about the experiences of Carers of Adults with Serious Mental Illness (SMI).

Hearing directly from Carers of adults with SMI will allow NSFT to gain a better understanding of their experiences and will help us to provide NSFT with recommendations on how the experiences of Carers can be improved.

Not everyone sees themselves as a Carer and some people may not be sure whether or not they are a Carer. The Carers Trust defines a Carer as:

“Anyone who cares, unpaid for a friend or family member who due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction cannot cope without their support”.

The term Serious Mental Illness (SMI):
“…is often used in healthcare settings and refers to psychological problems that are often so debilitating that people’s ability to engage in functional and occupational activities is severely impaired” – Healthy Surrey, 2023.

Common diagnoses associated with SMI include:
– Schizophrenia/ Schizoaffective Disorder
– Bi-polar disorder
– Psychosis

This can also include other diagnoses such as major depressive disorder, personality disorder and eating disorder, (when they are long-term and severely impact the person’s life).

We want to hear your experiences!

you are aged 16+ living in Norfolk and care for an adult (18+) with SMI we would like to hear about your experiences, as your views are important to us. All responses are anonymous and will be used by Healthwatch Norfolk to make recommendations to service providers as part of a project report. The report will also be publicly available on our website and may be used in other Healthwatch Norfolk communications.

The survey will take around 15 minutes to complete, although some questions are optional. Complete the short survey using the link below:

If you would prefer to do this survey with us over the phone, please call Healthwatch Norfolk on 01953 856029 and we will arrange a time to ring you back to complete the survey. Alternatively, please email for further support.

More information about the survey can be found on the Healthwatch Norfolk Website: