Caregivers of Older Adults With Cognitive Impairment
Published Date:Mar 16 2009
Source:Prev Chronic Dis. 6(2).
Because of the growing number of caregivers and the awareness of related health and quality-of-life issues, caregiving has emerged as an important public health issue. We examined the characteristics and caregiving experiences of caregivers of people with and without cognitive impairment.
Participants (n = 668) were adults who responded to the 2005 North Carolina Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Caregivers were people who provided regular care to a family member or friend aged 60 years or older either with or without cognitive impairment (ie, memory loss, confusion, or Alzheimer's disease).
Demographic characteristics of caregivers of people with cognitive impairment were similar to those of caregivers of people without cognitive impairment. However, compared with caregivers of people without cognitive impairment, caregivers of people with cognitive impairment reported higher levels of disability, were more likely to be paid, and provided care for a longer duration. Care recipients with cognitive impairment were more likely than care recipients without cognitive impairment to be older, have dementia or confusion, and need assistance with memory and learning.
State-level caregiving surveillance is vital in assessing and responding to the needs of the growing number of caregivers.
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