Planning for an emergency and how to get a carer's emergency card.

Call 999 if you think that you or the person you care for is in danger.

What to do in an emergency

As a carer you can expect two types of an emergency situation when:

  • the person you care for is at risk or in danger
  • you're caught up in an emergency and not able to provide care

What to do if person you care for is in danger

Make yourself safe first. You can't help anyone else unless you're safe. No one will mind if the situation turns out to be not as serious as you thought, and it's better to be safe than sorry. Contact our Emergency Duty Team on 01454 615 165 if you need help during the evenings or weekends.

Be prepared, make an emergency plan

Emergency situations may always be a surprise, but if you prepare for unexpected events, it will be easier for you to cope with this situation.

To be prepared for an emergency situation you should

  • keep details of people like doctors, hospital consultants, social workers and other professionals easy to find
  • write down a list of any medication that the person you care for may be taking. Include illegal drugs if you know they take any
  • if the person you care for is sick, keep an emergency bag ready with clothes for an overnight stay
  • ask friends or neighbours to help in an emergency
  • if your emergency plans break down, then social workers will help you, but it's always better to have planned ahead
  • try to keep a small amount of money on you, including change for bus fares or payphones
  • if you have a mobile, keep it charged and keep it with you. If you dont have a mobile, we may be able to get one for you.

What to do if you're caught up in an emergency

If you're seriously ill or are in an accident and unable to provide care, a carer's emergency card helps make sure the person you care for is safe.

The Carer's Emergency Card

As a carer, you should carry a Carer's Emergency Card.

It shows:

  • your name 
  • a unique identification number
  • an emergency phone number

In an emergency, the card can be used to let a 24 hour emergency call centre know that you are a carer and the person you care for needs help.

We will try to reach your emergency contacts if you have provided any. If they are able to take over caring responsibility we'll update them about your situation.

If they can't provide care, aren't available or you do not have any emergency contacts, we'll tell the emergency services, health services or social care services.

Who can register

You can get a Carer's Emergency Card if you give unpaid care to a family member, friend or neighbour because they're:

  • ill
  • frail
  • disabled
  • affected by mental ill health
  • affected by substance misuse

Why have a card?

If you're caring for somebody, its important that you get a Carer's Emergency Card to:

  • ensure that the person you care for will be safe if youre caught up in an emergency
  • have peace of mind in case something unexpected happens

Discounts for carers

Your Carer's Emergency Card gives you a range of discounts and offers across Bristol and South Gloucestershire. A full list of organisations taking part can be found on the Carers Support Centre website Go to https:\\\our-services\discounts-for-carers\ (opens new window)


The Carer's Emergency Card is free. If a carer can't provide care and we arrange alternative care, the person receiving care may have to make a contribution following a financial assessment. For more information, check our guide or call 0117 35 21668.

Apply for a card