“Informal carers” will start receiving benefits from 2018, says health secretary

Portugal’s PS leaders are considering sweeping changes to improve the situation of carers of the sick and elderly.

Talking to Lusa after a conference to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the IPO (cancer hospital’s) domiciliary care unit, secretary of state for health Manuel Delgado said the changes could come in the form of social, tax and even financial benefits.

The support planned for what Delgado called “informal carers” is still be studied, and has not yet been properly defined, but will be designed to “compensate” the decision these people have taken to “abdicate their professional lives for the compassion they have for their relatives”.

As he explained: “In a society where the majority of people go out to work, how can we resolve the problem of those who want to care for their own but can’t without prejudicing their professional and even economic lives?

The government’s ideas for this compensation will come in the 2018 budget, Delgado told Lusa.