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  • Introduction

    The information in this leaflet has been designed to support carers to prepare to have conversations with care teams, whether this is to accompany the person that you care for or to attend your own appointment. It may be helpful to take this leaflet with you.

    The Triangle of Care outlines six key principles which have been designed to ensure families, friends and carers are better involved and informed about care and supported in their caring role.  The Trust is working to ensure that these six principles are part of everyday practice, creating an inclusive culture where carers, service users and staff work together to ensure excellent health care is provided across all service areas.

    The Triangle of Care outlines six key principles:

    1. Carers and their essential role are identified at first contact, or as soon as possible afterward.

    2. Staff are ‘carer aware’ and trained in carer engagement strategies.

    3. Policy and practice protocols for confidentiality and sharing information are in place.

    4. Defined post(s) responsible for carers are in place.

    5. A carer introduction to the service and staff is available, with a relevant range of information across the acute care pathway.

    6. A range of carer support is available.

    The six key principles are designed to ensure families, friends and carers are better involved and informed in the provision of care and supported in their caring role.

  • What are the benefits of preparing for a conversation with the care team?

    • Giving you time to think about what questions you want to ask the care team.
    • Making the most of the appointment time.
    • Easing anxiety that you may be feeling prior to attending an appointment.


    Sometimes there can be difficulties in relation to confidentiality and sharing information. When a service user wishes to withhold information then the care team must respect these wishes.

    However, staff can listen to concerns and answer general information, not specific to the individual, this is known as common-sense confidentiality.

  • Some things to consider that may help you when preparing for appointments

    • Speak to the care team before an appointment if you have any reasonable adjustments (e.g., you would like an appointment later in the day, changes to environments such as reduced noise and lighting).
    • What would you like to get out of appointments, is there anything you would like to know or understand better?
    • It may help to write down some questions you have before an appointment.


    Some questions you may want to ask could include:

    Illness and diagnosis

    • What is the diagnosis or illness?
    • What symptoms suggest this diagnosis or illness?



    • What assessments have already been done?
    • Are there any other assessments that might be needed?


    Care and treatment

    • What are the aims of the care and treatment?
    • How long will they need treatment?


    Medication and side effects of medication

    • What medication is to be used, and how?
    • How often will the medication be reviewed?



    • What arrangements will be made for their care and monitoring after discharge from hospital?
    • If I am not able to look after the person when they are discharged, what will happen?


    Getting help and support

    • How can I get in touch with you?
    • Who do I contact in an emergency? What help might be available?
  • This space is for any questions that you would like to ask at an appointment

    Although you may not want to ask all the questions listed, you may find that they help you in preparing for an appointment.














  • Details of your carer contact(s) in case you have any further questions












  • Information abouy content, other formats and version control

    Further information about the content, reference sources or production of this booklet can be obtained from the Patient Information Centre. If you would like to tell us what you think about this leaflet please get in touch.

    This information can be made available in a range of formats on request (eg Braille, audio, larger print, BSL, easy read or other languages). Please contact the Patient Information Centre Tel: 0191 246 7288

    Published by the Patient Information Centre 2024

    Copyright, Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust

    Ref, PIC/906/0424 April 2024 V1


    Tel: 0191 246 7288

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    Review date 2027