Home Alone Revisited: Family Caregivers Providing Complex Care

AARP’s Public Policy Institute announced a follow-up study that builds on the landmark Home Alone study, which was the first national look at how family caregivers are managing medical/nursing tasks, such as managing medications, changing dressings, and other tasks in the home setting, that are typically performed by trained professionals in hospitals.

The new study – called Home Alone Revisited, focuses on cross-generational and multicultural caregivers and provides a list of 10 recommendations based on their findings.

Major findings of Home Alone Revisited include:

  • Family caregivers are largely on their own in learning how to perform medical/nursing tasks such as managing incontinence and preparing special diets.
  • Most family caregivers who perform medical/nursing tasks feel they have no choice.
  • Seven out of ten family caregivers performing medical/nursing tasks face the practical and emotional burden of managing pain.
  • Multicultural family caregivers are more likely to experience strain and worry about making a mistake, regardless of income.
  • Caregiving is a cross-generational issue for both women and men.
  • Social isolation compounds difficulties with complex care, across generations and cultural groups.
  • The CARE Act is now law in 42 states and seems to be making a difference, but only 20% of family caregivers were given at least 24 hours’ notice of hospital discharge

For more info, see the new Home Alone Revisited report here.

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