Posts tagged "Caregiver"

5 tips for the amateur caregiver

July 3, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “5 tips for the amateur caregiver”

 Caregiver Tip 1

Be prepared: Gather information from the health-care team or from caregiver groups on caring for your loved ones. Document your loved ones personal, medical and care information in CareRelay app portal.

 Caregiver Tip 2

Manage your time and your tasks, and delegate responsibilities. CareRelay app portal helps break significant problems or tasks into smaller ones, then distribute the load the load among the members in the circles of care you created in the app.

 Caregiver Tip 3

Set aside time for other loved ones and friends. Use CareRelay app portal to help make sure you communicate the needs of the patient loved one. Giving you the family caregiver more me time and the break you need.

 Caregiver Tip 4

Take a break and pamper yourself: go for a walk, have a massage, see a movie, take a hot bath, or visit a friend – whatever you enjoy doing and find relaxing. If you are worried about leaving your loved one alone, use CareRelay app portal help schedule others on trusted care tea, to come by while you are away. Use the app find who is near feature to see your closest circle member.

 Caregiver Tip 5

Use CareRelay app portal to create a caregivers group or reach out to public support groups. You may find it helpful to talk with other families; Some may be able to help you in your family circle.

 

Caregiver Support of Aging in Place Parents

June 8, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “Caregiver Support of Aging in Place Parents”

A disabled senior man is getting out of a car, into his wheelchair. His wife is helping him, holding the door open.

Aging in Place

Over the next 30 years, the prevalence of dementia is set to double. The increasing number of older adults as a proportion of the global population means, amongst other things, that health care facilities run the risk of becoming over-crowded and that practitioners will struggle to support those in need of care without additional resources in place. People with dementia may spend time in a hospital, nursing home or residential care, or they may live at home in their communities, alone or supported by family and caregivers. Aging in place means that older adults can choose to live at home if they can, and have attractive alternatives if they cannot. In order to achieve this, we need older adults to feel safe and supported, and to remain healthy and independent for as long as possible and as their needs change. Maximizing the quality of life and quality of care at advanced ages and keeping people in the community will be a major challenge of the 21st century and is already a focus of many government investments and strategies.

CareRelay has created solutions to improve and maintain the quality of life and quality of care, enabling older adults with dementia to maximize their independence and age in the most appropriate setting of choice home. CareRelay is innovative, engaging, practical,  tool solving a real-world problem for the individual, caregiver, healthcare provider or system.

Caregiver – woman helping senior man with shopping

Caregiver Support

According to the 2008/2009 Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS)–Healthy Aging, an estimated 3.8 million Canadians who were aged 45 or older (35%) were providing informal care to a senior with a short- or long-term health condition. With the recent census data showing that for the first time in Canadian history, the population over 65 has exceeded the population under age 15, the reliance on informal caregivers to care for their loved ones is an ever-increasing focus and concern for governments around the world. In an already complex environment, we also know that the population with dementia in Canada is likely to double every 20 years going forward, and people with dementia generally require high levels of care, most of which is provided by informal or family caregivers.

Formal caregivers are individuals who receive payment to provide care, such as personal support workers and nurses, while informal caregivers are typically not paid to provide care and include family members. CareRelay focuses on these informal caregivers who often times, receive little to no training on caring for older adults with complex health histories and at times, and who experience challenging behaviors that are difficult to manage.

It is caregivers who often are the ones who keep their loved ones at home, however, this support comes at a cost of caregiver distress because they are at increased risk for burden, stress, depression, and a variety of other health complications leading to poorer quality of life for the caregiver. Caregivers often lack social contact and support, they tend to have few leisurely pursuits and hobbies, and at times are forced to give up or reduce employment in order to care for their loved ones.

CareRelay is the solution that supports caregivers (formal and informal) in their care for older adults. 

Caregiver Health A Population at Risk

May 29, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “Caregiver Health A Population at Risk”

An estimated 44 million Americans age 18 and older provide unpaid assistance and support to older people and adults with disabilities who live in the community.1 The value of this unpaid labor force is estimated to be at least $306 billion annually,2 nearly double the combined costs of home health care ($43 billion) and nursing home care ($115 billion).3

Evidence shows that most caregivers are ill-prepared for their role and provide care with little or no support,4, 5, 6 yet more than one-third of caregivers continue to provide intense care to others while suffering from poor health themselves.7 Studies have shown that an influential factor in a caregiver’s decision to place an impaired relative in a long-term care facility is the family caregiver’s own physical health.8, 9, 10, 11

A substantial body of research shows that family members who provide care to individuals with chronic or disabling conditions are themselves at risk. Emotional, mental, and physical health problems arise from complex caregiving situations and the strains of caring for frail or disabled relatives.

Today, medical advances, shorter hospital stays, limited discharge planning, and expansion of home care technology have placed increased costs as well as increased care responsibilities on families, who are being asked to shoulder greater care burdens for longer periods of time.12, 13 To make matters worse, caregivers are more likely to lack health insurance coverage due to time out of the workforce.14 These burdens and health risks can hinder the caregivers’ ability to provide care, lead to higher health care costs and affect the quality of life of both the caregiver and care receivers.

Impact of Caregiving on Caregiver Mental and Emotional Health

The psychological health of the family caregiver is negatively affected by providing care. Higher levels of stress, anxiety, depression and other mental health effects are common among family members who care for an older relative or friend.

Caregivers show higher levels of depression.

  • Studies consistently report higher levels of depressive symptoms and mental health problems among caregivers than among their noncaregiving peers.15, 16, 17, 18, 19
  • Estimates show that between 40 to 70% of caregivers have clinically significant symptoms of depression, with approximately one quarter to one-half of these caregivers meeting the diagnostic criteria for major depression.20
  • Both caregiver depression and perceived burden increase as the care receiver’s functional status declines.21 Thus, higher levels of clinical depression are attributed to people caring for individuals with dementia. Studies show that 30 to 40% of dementia caregivers suffer from depression and emotional stress.22, 23
  • Depression and anxiety disorders found in caregivers persist and can even worsen after the placement of the patient in a nursing home. Many caregivers who institutionalize their relative report depressive symptoms and anxiety to be as high as it was when care was in the home.24
  • Depressed caregivers are more likely to have coexisting anxiety disorders, substance abuse or dependence, and chronic disease. Depression is also one of the most common conditions associated with suicide attempts.25

Caregivers suffer from high levels of stress and frustration.

  • Caregivers have higher levels of stress than noncaregivers.26 They also describe feeling frustrated, angry, drained, guilty or helpless as a result of providing care.27
  • Some 16% of caregivers feel emotionally strained and 26% say taking care of the care recipient is hard on them emotionally.28 An additional 13% of caregivers feel frustrated with the lack of progress made with the care recipient.29
  • Caregiving can also result in feeling a loss of self-identity, lower levels of self-esteem, constant worry, or feelings of uncertainty.30 Caregivers have less self-acceptance and feel less effective and less in control of their lives than noncaregivers.31, 32
  • More than one-fifth (22%) of caregivers are exhausted when they go to bed at night, and many feel they cannot handle all their caregiving responsibilities.33
  • Caregivers who experience chronic stress may be at greater risk for cognitive decline including a loss in short-term memory, attention, and verbal IQ.35 

Health Consequences for Women Caregivers

  • Research shows that female caregivers (who comprise about two-thirds of all unpaid caregivers)41,42 fare worse than their male counterparts, reporting higher levels of depressive and anxiety symptoms and lower levels of subjective well-being, life satisfaction, and physical health than male caregivers.43,44,45
  • According to one study, there is a dramatic increase in the risk of mental health consequences among women who provide 36 or more hours per week of care to a spouse.46
  • In a national survey on caregiver health, more than one in five (21%) women surveyed had mammograms less often.47

Stressful caregiving situations may lead to harmful behaviors.

  • As a response to increased stress, caregivers are shown to have increased alcohol and other substance use. Several studies have shown that caregivers use prescription and psychotropic drugs more than noncaregivers.37, 38
  • Family caregivers are at greater risk for higher levels of hostility than noncaregivers.39
  • Spousal caregivers who are at risk of clinical depression and are caring for a spouse with significant cognitive impairment and/or physical care needs are more likely to engage in harmful behavior toward their loved one.40

Impact of Caregiving on Caregiver Physical Health

High rates of depressive symptoms and mental health problems among caregivers, compounded with the physical strain of caring for someone who cannot perform activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing, grooming, and other personal care activities, but many caregivers at serious risk for poor physical health outcomes. Indeed, the impact of providing care can lead to increased health care needs for the caregiver.

Caregivers are in worse health.

  • About one in ten (11%) caregivers report that caregiving has caused their physical health to get worse.48
  • Caregivers have lower levels of subjective well-being and physical health than noncaregivers.49, 50 In 2005, three-fifths of caregivers reported fair or poor health status, one or more chronic conditions, or a disability, compared with one-third of noncaregivers.51 Caregivers also reported chronic conditions (including heart attack/heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis) at nearly twice the rate of noncaregivers (45 vs. 24%).52
  • Caregivers suffer from increased rates of physical ailments (including acid reflux, headaches, and pain/aching),53 increased tendencies to develop serious illness,54 and have high levels of obesity and bodily pain.55
  • Studies demonstrate that caregivers have diminished immune response, which leads to frequent infection and increased risk of cancers.56, 57, 58 For example, caregivers have a 23% higher level of stress hormones and a 15% lower level of antibody responses.59 Caregivers also suffer from slower wound healing.60
  • The physical stress of caregiving can affect the physical health of the caregiver, especially when providing care for someone who cannot transfer him/herself out of bed, walk or bathe without assistance. Ten percent of primary caregivers report that they are physically strained.61

Caregivers have an increased risk of heart disease.

  • Caregivers exhibit exaggerated cardiovascular responses to stressful conditions which put them at greater risk than noncaregivers for the development of cardiovascular syndromes such as high blood pressure or heart disease.62, 63
  • Women providing care to an ill/disabled spouse are more likely to report a personal history of high blood pressure, diabetes and higher levels of cholesterol.64
  • Women who spend nine or more hours a week caring for an ill or disabled spouse increase their risk of heart disease two-fold.65

Caregivers have lower levels of self-care.

  • Caregivers are less likely to engage in preventive health behaviors.66
  • Spousal caregivers who provide 36 or more hours per week of care are slightly more likely to smoke and consume more saturated fat.67
  • Compared to noncaregivers, women caregivers are twice as likely not to fill a prescription because of the cost (26% vs. 13%).68
  • Nearly three quarters (72%) of caregivers reported that they had not gone to the doctor as often as they should, and more than half (55%) had missed doctors appointments.69
  • Caregivers’ self-care suffers because they lack the time and energy to prepare proper meals or to exercise. About six in ten caregivers in a national survey reported that their eating (63%) and exercising (58%) habits are worse than before.70
  • Caregivers in rural areas are at a greater disadvantage for having their own medical needs met due to difficulty getting to the hospital and doctor.71

Caregivers pay the ultimate price for providing care—increased mortality.

  • Elderly spousal caregivers (aged 66-96) who experience caregiving-related stress have a 63% higher mortality rate than noncaregivers of the same age.72
  • In 2006, hospitalization of an elderly spouse was found to be associated with an increased risk of caregiver death.73

Increasing Positive Health Outcomes for Caregivers

A large and growing body of evidence reveals that providing care for a chronically sick person can have harmful physical, mental, and emotional consequences for the caregiver.74, 75, 76, 77 As families struggle to care for others, their own health is put in danger. As a result, caregiver health is quickly becoming a public health issue that requires more focused attention from health professionals, policymakers and caregivers themselves to ensure the health and safety of those individuals dedicating their lives to the care of others.

Increasing appropriate mental health services and medical care for family caregivers are important steps toward addressing caregiver health. Although caregiving can have a negative impact on caregivers’ health and well-being, research demonstrates its effects can be alleviated at least partially by:

  • An assessment of family caregiver needs that leads to a care plan with support services;78, 79
  • Caregiver education and support programs;80, 81, 82
  • Respite to reduce caregiver burden;83, 84, 85
  • Financial support to alleviate the economic stress of
    caregiving; and
  • Primary care interventions that address caregiver needs.86, 87

Improved recognition and treatment of physical and psychological symptoms among caregivers is a growing health concern and should be considered a public health priority. Keeping family caregivers healthy and able to provide care is key to maintaining our nation’s long-term care system and, with the aging of the population, this issue will only grow more important in the coming decades.

Prepared by Family Caregiver Alliance in cooperation with California’s Caregiver Resource Center. Reviewed by Moira  Fordyce, MD, MB, ChB, Adjunct Clinical Professor, Stanford University School of Medicine, President, California Geriatrics Society, and a fellow of the American Geriatrics Society. Funded by the California Department of Mental Health. © 2006 Family Caregiver Alliance. All rights reserved. https://www.caregiver.org/caregiver-health 

 

Endnotes

1 National Alliance for Caregiving & AARP. (2004). Caregiving in the U.S. Washington, DC: Author.
2 National Family Caregivers Association & Family Caregiver Alliance (2006). Prevalence, Hours and Economic Value of Family Caregiving, Updated State-by-State Analysis of 2004 National Estimates (by Peter S. Arno, PhD). Kensington, MD: NFCA & San Francisco, CA: FCA.
3 Arno, P.S. (2006). Economic Value of Informal Caregiving: 2004. Presented at the Care Coordination & the Caregiver Forum, Department of Veterans Affairs, January 25-27, 2006.
4 National Alliance for Caregiving & AARP. (2004). Caregiving in the U.S. Washington, DC: Author.
5 Alzheimer’s Association & National Alliance for Caregiving. (2004). Families Care: Alzheimer’s Caregiving in the United States. Chicago, IL: Alzheimer’s Association and Bethesda, MD: National Alliance for Caregiving.
6 Family Caregiver Alliance (2006). Caregiver Assessment: Principles, Guidelines and Strategies for Change. Report from a National Consensus Development Coference (Vol. I). San Francisco: Author.
7 Navaie-Waliser, M., Feldman, P.H., Gould, D.A., Levine, C.L., Kuerbis, A.N. & Donelan, K. (2002). When the caregiver needs care: The plight of vulnerable caregivers. American Journal of Public Health, 92(3), 409–413.
8 Buhr, G.T., Kuchibhatla, M., & Clipp, E. (2006). Caregivers’ reasons for nursing home placement: Cues for improving discussions with families prior to the transition. The Gerontologist, 46(1): 52-61.
9 Whitlatch, C.J., Feinberg, L.F., & Sebesta, D.S. (1997). Depression and health in family caregivers. Journal of Aging and Health, Vol.9 (2), 222-243.
10 Whitlatch, C.J., Feinberg, L.F., & Stevens, E.J. (1999).  Predictors of institutionalization for persons with Alzheimer’s disease and the impact on family caregivers.  Journal of Mental Health and Aging, Vol. 5(3). 275-288.
11 Lieberman, M.A. & Kramer, J.H. (1991). Factors affecting decisions to institutionalize demented elderly. The Gerontologist, 31, 371-374.
12 Family Caregiver Alliance. (2006). Caregiver Assessment: Principles, Guidelines and Strategies for Change. Report from a National Consensus Development Conference (Vol. I). San Francisco: Author.
13 Levine, C., (Ed.). (2004). Always On Call: When Illness Turns Families Into Caregivers. New York: United Hospital Fund.
14 Ho, A., Collins, S., Davis, K. & Doty, M. (2005). A Look at Working-Age Caregivers Roles, Health Concerns, and Need for Support (Issue Brief). New York, NY: The Commonwealth Fund. 
15 Schulz, R.., O’Brien, A.T., Bookwals, J., & Fleissner, K. (1995). Psychiatric and physical morbidity effects of dementia caregiving: Prevalence, correlates, and causes. The Gerontologist, 35: 771-791.
16 Marks, N., Lambert, J.D. & Choi, H. (2002). Transitions to caregiving, gender, and psychological well-being: A prospective U.S. national study. Journal of Marriage and Family, 64, 657–667.
17 Pinquart, M. & Sorensen, S. (2003). Differences between caregivers and noncaregivers in psychological health and physical health: A meta-analysis. Psychology and Aging, 18(2), 250-267.
18 Teri, L., Logsdon, R., Uomoto, J., McCurry, S.M. (1997). Behavioral treatment of depression in dementia patients: A controlled clinical trial. Journal of Gerontology B: Psychological Science and Social Science, 52, 159-166.
19 Schulz, R., Newsom, J., Mittelmark, M., Burton, L., Hirsch, C. & Jackson, S. (1997). Health effects of caregiving: The Caregiver Health Effects Study: An ancillary study of  The Cardiovascular Health Study. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 19: 110-116.
20 Zarit, S. (2006). Assessment of Family Caregivers: A Research Perspective. In Family Caregiver Alliance (Eds.), Caregiver Assessment: Voices and Views from the Field. Report from a National Consensus Development Conference (Vol. II) (pp. 12 – 37). San Francisco: Family Caregiver Alliance.
21 Grunfeld, E. (2004). Family caregiver burden: Results from a longitudinal study of breast cancer patients and their principal caregivers. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 170(12): 1795-1801.
22 Covinsky, K.E., Newcomer, R., Dane, C.K., Sands, L.P., Yaffe, K. (2003). Patient and caregiver characteristics associated with depression in caregivers of patients with dementia. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 18: 1006-14.
23 Alzheimer’s Association & National Alliance for Caregiving. (2004). Families Care: Alzheimer’s Caregiving in the United States. Chicago, IL: Alzheimer’s Association and Bethesda, MD: National Alliance for Caregiving.
24 Schulz, R., Belle, S., Czaja, S., McGinnis, K., Stevens, A. & Zhang, S. (2004). Long-term care placement of dementia patients and caregiver health and well-being. JAMA, 292 (8): 961-967.
25 Spector, J. & Tampi, R. (2005). Caregiver depression. Annals of Long-Term Care: Clinical Care and Aging, 13(4): 34-40.
26 Pinquart, M. & Sorensen, S. (2003) Differences between caregivers and noncaregivers in psychological health and physical health: A meta-analysis. Psychology and Aging, 18(2), 250-267.
27 Center on Aging Society. (2005). How Do Family Caregivers Fare? A Closer Look at Their Experiences. (Data Profile, Number 3). Washington, DC: Georgetown University.
28 Ibid.
29 Ibid.
30 Ibid.
31 Marks, N., Lambert, J.D. & Choi, H. (2002). Transitions to caregiving, gender, and psychological well-being: A prospective U.S. national study. Journal of Marriage and Family, 64, 657–667.
32 Pinquart, M. & Sorensen, S. (2003) Differences between caregivers and noncaregivers in psychological health and physical health: A meta-analysis. Psychology and Aging, 18(2), 250-267.
33 Center on Aging Society. (2005). How Do Family Caregivers Fare? A Closer Look at Their Experiences. (Data Profile, Number 3). Washington, DC: Georgetown University.
35 Vitaliano, P.P., Echeverria, D., Yi, J., Phillips, P.E.M, Young, H. & Siegler, I.C.. (2005). Psychophysiological mediators of caregiver stress and differential cognitive decline. Psychology and Aging, 20: 402-411.
37 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (1998). Informal Caregiving: Compassion in Action. (Based on data from the National Survey of Families and Households [NSFH]), Washington, DC: Author.
38 National Alliance for Caregiving & Evercare. (2006). Evercare® Study of Caregivers in Decline: A Close-up Look at the Health Risks of Caring for a Loved One. Bethesda, MD: National Alliance for Caregiving and Minnetonka, MN: Evercare.
39 Marks, N., Lambert, J.D., & Choi, H. (2002). Transitions to caregiving, gender, and psychological well-being: A prospective U.S. national study. Journal of Marriage and Family, 64, 657–667.
40 Beach, S.R., Schulz, R., Williamson, G.M., Miller, L.S., Weiner, M.F. & Lance, C.E. (2005). Risk factors for potentially harmful informal caregiver behavior. Journal of the American Geriatric Society, 53: 255-61.
41 National Alliance for Caregiving & AARP. (2004). Caregiving in the U.S. Washington, DC: Author.
42 Johnson, R.W. & Wiener, J.M. (2006). A Profile of Older Americans and Their Caregivers (Occasional Paper Number 8), Washington, DC: The Urban Institute.
43 Miller, B. & Cafasso, L. (1992). Gender differences in caregiving: fact or artifact? The Gerontologist, 32: 498-507.
44 Yee, J.L. & Schulz, R. (2000). Gender differences in psychiatric morbidity among family caregivers: a review and analysis. The Gerontologist, 40: 147-164.
45 Pinquart, M. & Sorensen, S. (2006). Gender differences in caregiver stressors, social resources, and health: An updated meta-analysis. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 61B (1): 33-45.
46 Cannuscio, C., Jones, C., Kawachi, I. Colditz, G., Berkman, L. & Rimm, E. (2002). Reverberations of family illness: A longitudinal assessment of informal caregiving and mental health status in the nurses’ health study. American Journal of Public Health, 92(8), 1305-1311.
47 National Alliance for Caregiving & Evercare. (2006). Evercare® Study of Caregivers in Decline: A Close-up Look at the Health Risks of Caring for a Loved One. Bethesda, MD: National Alliance for Caregiving and Minnetonka, MN: Evercare.
48 Center on Aging Society. (2005). How Do Family Caregivers Fare? A Closer Look at Their Experiences. (Data Profile, Number 3). Washington, DC:.Georgetown University.
49 Pinquart, M. & Sorensen, S. (2003). Differences between caregivers and noncaregivers in psyhcological health and physical health: A meta-analysis. Psychology and Aging, 18(2), 250-267.
50 Schulz, R., O’Brien, A.T., Bookwals, J. & Fleissner, K. (1995). Psychiatric and physical morbidity effects of dementia caregiving: Prevalance, correlates, and causes. The Gerontologist, 35: 771-791.
51 Ho, A., Collins, S., Davis, K. & Doty, M. (2005). A Look at Working-Age Caregivers Roles, Health Concerns, and Need for Support (Issue Brief). New York, NY: The Commonwealth Fund.
52 Ibid.
53 National Alliance for Caregiving & Evercare. (2006). Evercare® Study of Caregivers in Decline: A Close-up Look at the Health Risks of Caring for a Loved One. Bethesda, MD: National Alliance for Caregiving and Minnetonka, MN: Evercare.
54 Shaw, W.S., Patterson, T.L., Semple, S.J., Ho, S., Irwin, M.R., Hauger, R.L. & Grant, I.  (1997). Longitudinal analysis of multiple indicators of health decline among spousal caregivers. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 19: 101-109.
55 Barrow, S. & Harrison, R. (2005). Unsung heroes who put their lives at risk? Informal caring, health, and neighborhood attachment. Journal of Public Health, 27(3): 292-297.
56 Kiecolt-Glaser, J.K., Dura, J.R. & Speicher, C.E., (1991). Spousal caregivers of dementia victims: Longitudinal changes in immunity and health. Psychosomatic Medicine, 53(4):345-362.
57 Kiecolt-Glaser, J., Glaser, R., Gravenstein, S., Malarkey, W.B. & Sheridan, J.,(1996). Chronic stress alters the immune response to influenza virus vaccine in older adults. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 93: 3043-3047.
58 Glaser, R. & Kiecolt-Glaser, J.K. (1997). Chronic stress modulates the virus-specific immune response to latent herpes simplex virus Type 1. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 19:  78-82.
59 Vitaliano, P., Zhang, J. & Scanlan, J. (2003). Is caregiving hazardous to one’s physical health? A meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 129(6): 946-972.
60 Kiecolt-Glaser, J.K., Marucha, P.T., Malarkey, W.B., Mercado, A.M. & Glaser, R.  (1996) Slowing of wound healing by psychological stress. Lancet, 346(8984): 1194-1196.
61 Center on Aging Society. (2005). How Do Family Caregivers Fare? A Closer Look at Their Experiences. (Data Profile, Number 3). Washington, DC: Georgetown University.
62 King, A.C., Oka, R.K., Young, D.R. (1994). Ambulatory blood pressure and heart rate responses to the stress of work and caregiving in older women. Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, 49: 239-245.
63 Shaw, W.S., Patterson, T.L., Ziegler, M.G., Dimsdale, J.E., Semple, S.J. & Grant, I. (1999). Accelerated risk of hypertensive blood pressure recordings among Alzheimer’s caregivers. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 46: 215-227.
64 Lee, S.L., Colditz, G.A., Berkman, L.F., & Kawachi, I. (2003). Caregiving and risk of coronary heart disease in U.S. women: A prospective study. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 24(2), 113–119.
65 Ibid.
66 Schulz, R., Newsom, J., Mittelmark, M., Burton, L., Hirsch, C. & Jackson, S. (1997). Health effects of caregiving: The Caregiver Health Effects Study: an ancillary study of The Cardiovascular Health Study. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 19: 110-116.
67 Lee, S.L., Colditz, G.A., Berkman, L.F. & Kawachi, I. (2003). Caregiving and risk of coronary heart disease in U.S. women: A prospective study. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 24(2), 113–119.
68 The Commonwealth Fund. (1999). Informal Caregiving (Fact Sheet). New York: Author.
69 National Alliance for Caregiving & Evercare. (2006). Evercare® Study of Caregivers in Decline: A Close-up Look at the Health Risks of Caring for a Loved One. Bethesda, MD: National Alliance for Caregiving and Minnetonka, MN: Evercare.
70 Ibid.
71 Tanner Sanford, J., Johnson, A.D., & Townsend-Rocchiccioli, J. (2005). The Health Status of Rural Caregivers. Journal of Gerontological Nursing,31(4), 25-31.
72 Schulz, R. & Beach, S. (1999). Caregiving as a risk factor for mortality: The Caregiver Health Effects Study, JAMA, 282: 2215-2219.
73 Christakis, N.A. & Allison, P.D. (2006). Mortality after the hospitalization of a spouse. New England Journal of Medicine, 354: 719-730.
74 Schulz, R. & Beach, S.R. (1999) Caregiving as a risk factor for mortality: The caregiver health effects study. Journal of the American Medical Association, 282, 2215-2219.
75 Pinquart, M. & Sorensen S. (2003). Differences between caregivers and noncaregivers in psychological health and physical health: A meta-analysis. Psychology and Aging, 18(2), 250-267.
76 Navaie-Waliser, M., Feldman, P.H., Gould, D.A., Levine, C.L., Kuerbis, A.N. & Donelan, K. (2002). When the caregiver needs care: The plight of vulnerable caregivers. American Journal of Public Health, 92(3), 409–413.
77 Family Caregiver Alliance (2006). Caregiver Assessment: Voices and Views from the Field. Report from a National Consensus Development Conference (Vol. II). San Francisco: Author.
78 Gwyther, L.P., Ballard, E.L. & Hinman-Smith, E.A.(1990). Overcoming Barriers to Appropriate Service Use: Effective Individualized Strategies for Alzheimer’s Care. Durham, N.C.: Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development.
79 Guberman, N., Keefe, J., Fancey, P., Nahmiash, D. & Barylak, L. (2001). Assessment Tools Serving the Needs of Caregivers: A Document to Better Understand the Importance of Assessing Caregivers’ Needs. Montreal, Canada: School of Social Work, University of Quebec at Montreal.
80 Cooke, D., McNally, L., Mulligan, K., Harrison, M., & Newman, P. (2001). Psychosocial interventions for caregivers of people with dementia: A systematic review. Aging & Mental Health, 5(2): 120-135.
81 Gallagher-Thompson, D., Lovett, S., Rose, J., McKibben, C., Coon, D., Futterman, A., & Thompson, L.W. (2000). Impact of psycho-educational interventions on distressed caregivers. Journal of Clinical Geropsychology, 6(2): 91-110.
82 Family Caregiver Alliance. (2004). California Caregiver Resource Centers 2004 Satisfaction Survey. San Francisco, CA: Author.
83 Lyons, K. & Zarit, S. (1999). Formal and informal support: The great divide. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 14, 183-196.
84 Zarit, S., Gaugler, J. & Jarrott, S. (1999). Useful services for families: Research findings and directions. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 14: 165-181.
85 Zarit, S., Stephens, M., Townsend, A. & Greene, R. (1998). Stress reduction for family caregivers: Effects of adult day care use. Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences, 53B: S267-S277.
86 The Lewin Group. (2002). The national family caregiver support program resource guide. Falls Church, VA: Author.
87 Kaye, L.W., Turner, W., Butler, S.S., Downey, R. & Cotton, A. (2003). Early intervention screening for family caregivers of older relatives in primary care practices. Family Community Health, 26(4): 319–328.

4 Tips for Addressing Elder Abuse

May 24, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “4 Tips for Addressing Elder Abuse”

About 10 percent of older Canadians will suffer some form of elder abuse, such as physical violence, emotional, financial, psychological or systemic abuse at some point. Most occurrences happen at the hands of family members, caregivers, or another person they trust, and these incidents are likely to become more prevalent as our aging population continues to grow.

  1. Learn how to prevent elder abuse.
    Educate yourself; observant and intervene if you have concerns or suspicions.
  2. Know what to look for.
    Older adults who are experiencing abuse or neglect may:

    • Shows signs of depression or anxiety, become withdrawn or seem fearful around certain people
    • Have unexplained physical injuries
    • Lack food, clothing or other necessities
    • Show changes in their hygiene or nutrition
    • Have unusual withdrawals from their bank account
  3. Use CareRelay Portal.
    • Improve accountability about what people do with your loved one
    • Share information across the circle of the care team
    • Know who has checked in at the location of your loved ones
  4. Report suspected elder abuse.
    • If the elder is in immediate, life-threatening danger, call 911
    • In non-life threatening situations, you can report elder abuse and seek support through the following resources:
      • Seniors Safety Line, Toll-Free: +1-866-299-1011 or simply call 211
      • Elder Abuse Ontario: www.elderabuseontario.com
      • Victim Support Line, Toll-Free: +1-888-579-2888

Family Care Story

May 23, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “Family Care Story”

A typical story of a family without CareRelay to helping project manage the long-term care of their mother.

By early 2000 it was clear to my two sisters and I that our dear mother had begun her descent into the abyss of early-stage dementia. The best memories of my mother were of a woman who was active in so many ways. A lover of the fine arts and an avid walker who, while never having owned a pair of sneakers in her life would often go for 10K walks in some form of street shoes. She never drove a car but travelled the world with an unquenchable thirst for adventure, discovery and new experience.

During her initial period of cognitive decline, I consulted a medical specialist who met with my Mom and conducted an extensive interview. Her recommendation was that if we were able, Mom should continue to “live at home” in the apartment she had lived in for over thirty years. The professional recommendation was based on historical findings that seniors at our mother’s cognitive level will decline much faster if moved from their familiar home environment to a new residence.

My two sisters and I accepted the Doctors recommendation and decided with some additional help we would keep Mom at home as long as possible. One of my two sisters had moved away over thirty years ago to a city several thousand miles away. While she was caring and concerned she was not available to actively participate in the day to day challenges that lay ahead. As the only son I did what I was able to do, however, it was my oldest sister who stepped up, became the primary caregiver and managed this demanding situation with love and unshakeable determination to provide the best possible care and attention to our mother. My sister is not a follower of technology and to this day does not have a cell phone. Communication was maintained by landline.

I know that the five or so years that followed up until the time of our mothers passing were demanding and exhausting for my sister. Without the use of cyber technology or any other way of efficiently communicating updating and distributing the responsibilities to others, her life must have seemed like she was running an unending marathon while carrying a very heavy pack on her back.

Since my mother’s passing the technological waves of disruption and innovation have washed over the world and new online tools coupled with the immediate help that they provide significantly reduce and help to manage the challenge faced by caregivers around the world. CareRelay portal was designed and created for families everywhere. This revolutionary tool is now available and will simplify, maintain and distribute all caregiving responsibilities to a degree previously unimaginable. With little more than a “click”, the most demanding tasks that now form any caregiver’s responsibilities can be managed and distributed with up to date records and tasks communicated to a willing circle of family, friends and professionals regardless of where they are located or what they are doing.

Signed Early Adopter

Now after so many years after their mother’s passing our early adopter is using app.LifeCarePortal.com for themselves. They are not at the stage that they need help from their children, but the aging caregiver is having health issues come up, and with CareRelay Portal they can keep track of them easily in one place and share with family as needed. As back up in case of emergency the spouse and children have all the information at hand.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unpaid Caregiver Profile

May 22, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “Unpaid Caregiver Profile”

The average caregiver in the U.S. and Canada is a middle-aged woman who, in addition to her demanding job and family responsibilities, spends 20 hours a week providing unpaid care for her elderly parent. Approximately 65+ million Americans are caregivers for loved ones, and though they are unpaid, the economic value of their care is about $470+ billion per year.

In Ontario alone, there are 3.3 million people in Ontario who have the same role, which is 29 percent of the current provincial population.  An in-depth review of Ontario-specific data from Statistics Canada’s 2012 General Social Survey (GSS) also found that’s it’s impacting the workplace as well:

  • 30% were late for work or had to leave early;
  • 29% missed an average of six days of work because of caregiving duties; and
  • 1% left their employment voluntarily or involuntarily.

We rely heavily on these caregivers to provide care to our aging population, but this system is not sustainable. Caregivers are burdened financially, emotionally, and physically with the increased likelihood of mental and chronic health conditions –  as they look to ensure every doctor’s appointment is kept and every prescription is filled.  By recognizing, facilitating and supporting family caregivers, the overall patient experience is improved and an environment with the highest quality of care can be delivered.

CareRelay Portal was built to more transparently and proactively distribute the role of caregiving to a wider village – a team of loved ones who all have a shared connection with a loved one and all has shared an interest in his or her wellbeing as they age at home.  CareRelay helps family and friends manage the long-term care and day-to-day responsibilities of loved ones in a central, secure and HIPAA-compliant online and mobile platform that extends, assigns and delegates tasks, services, and need to know the medical information to caregivers.

Caregiver – woman helping the senior man with a shopping

CareRelay is not:

… a system for hospitals or clinics to manage patient records and communications

… a system for nursing homes to keep families informed

… a system for marketing medical teleconference services

… or, for a live-in, full-time paid caregiver hired by a wealthy family

 

CareRelay is:

… a way to balance and distribute the daily tasks and responsibilities across caregivers

… a place to document and discuss the legal, financial and emotional needs of care

… and, a way for loved ones to age gracefully at home longer, with peace of mind.

 

Key Features:

  • Easily create a circle of care around your loved one, so siblings, close friends or another family can share in the caretaking responsibilities, including those located in a different city, province or country to not only maintain transparency and participation.
  • Assign and delegate tasks to the care team, whether it’s bringing mom to the doctor on Thursday or taking her for her monthly hair appointment.
  • An easy-to-read dashboard that shows upcoming tasks, needs, and appointments so you can monitor more proactively
  • Integrated third-party services like grocery delivery, home security, and automation, housekeeping and handyman services, or transportation, so if you can’t take mom to her appointment on Thursday you can pre-book an Uber right from the platform.

Target User Categories: 

  • Aging in place parents
  • Patient-Oriented Discharge Summary (PODS)
  • Long-term care of children
  • Developmental and Physical Disabilities
  • Mental Health
  • Addiction and Recovery
  • Discharged Veteran’s Support

65+ million amateur caregivers in North America are you one of them?

May 21, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “65+ million amateur caregivers in North America are you one of them?”

There are 65+ million amateur caregivers in North America are you one of them? What does it cost you in stress, health and lost productivity being sandwiched between kids, work and parents?

We have been there too that is why we created CareRelay Portal to help people like us help our loved ones. Try our beta we need your feedback to make it better for all of us.

Try Our beta today its FREE

All of our Beta Partners love that we can help them!

Families and Caregivers

  • The vulnerable elderly get lower costs, better health, and life quality.
  • Millions of Dollars in Estate Preservation.
  • Aging in the home saves money and preserves the estate value for seniors and their families and Heirs.
  • Seniors want to live well and pass on wealth to their children

What if you could solve all these burning issues, produce a powerful social benefit and win financially?

Relay – Our CareRelay Portal uses a mobile application to link everyone in the chain of care. We help manage the long-term care of family members. Providing patient document management, planning, and scheduling of resources, reduce caregiver stress, provide visibility and accountability with the full circle of care.

CareRelay is secure HIPAA-compliant, with an online portal for helping the management of the long-term care of family members. Its purpose is to be the primary repository for the data records necessary for providing care for any long-term family member or dependent person. CareRelay improves communication between other family members, medical professional, and caregivers. It provides accountability to many touch points – appointments, medical records, daily schedules, legal and related information as well as general data for the betterment of patient care. When Families need outside support, our integration with third-party partners can get groceries delivered, order an Uber for mom’s doctor appointment, or get a referral to our network of professional service providers for life planning or daily support. Reduce Costs to Government and families.

  • Preserve family capital.
  • Improve physical health.
  • Improve Mental Health.
  • Communicate better within the circle of care
  • Track and improve progress and outcomes.
  • Reduce patient and family stress.
  • Spread the workload among the support group

It is Critical that we improve communication and accountability for those involved in the care of the patient. We provide an easy to use a centrally assessed repository of data about the patient, with tools that enable family/professionals/caregivers to cope with critical or long-term care issues.

That is a huge financial burden and A LOT of STRESS.

 

Try Our beta today its FREE

Wish I had CareRelay Sooner

May 18, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “Wish I had CareRelay Sooner”

This is a story from one of our new users:

It’s challenging to have a parent who has Alzheimer’s.  Mom needs special care from someone who knows how to handle the many stages of this disease.  We have a few hours of help in the morning to get Mom ready for the day, but it’s not easy to keep track of all her needs.  This platform helps organize all my families duties reappointments, meds and who’s able to be with Mom.

Wish I had this portal to help my Dad before he passed away.  He had a lot of medical challenges.  Trying to organize all this can be overwhelming and to do it alone and working as well is almost impossible.  Thank goodness it was easier for the caregiver to help by having all this information in one place when designating the tasks at hand.

The medical information was available immediately to the person who attended mom’s doctor visits or any emergency hospital visits.  Mom’s private and personal legal information was close at hand as well and could only be accessed by the people closest to Mom.  Most of the time people aren’t prepared when the most challenging times occur.

 

The Growing Contributions of Family Caregiving

May 18, 2018 Posted by Article 0 thoughts on “The Growing Contributions of Family Caregiving”

Our parents are getting older and staying in the house longer.

No one wants to think they will need long-term care. We don’t want to plan for it, even though millions of us are, or will suffer from multiple chronic illnesses. To add to the problem, we are living longer and need to learn to cope with fragmented families, increasing care costs, and the worrisome ineffability of care crisis for ourselves or someone we care about.

  • There are 46.2 million people age 65 and over in the US.  
  • 55% of women in this demographic are widowed, divorced or living alone
  • 30% of men.  

The majority of caregivers are female (60%), but 40 percent are male. Eight in 10 are taking care of one person (82%). They are 49 years of age, on average. A large majority of caregivers provide care for a relative (85%), with 49 percent caring for a parent or parent-in-law.  But families are getting smaller (i.e. Baby Boomers vs Millennials) thus care will extend further outside the immediate family with technology dependencies to augment care.

“Approximately 34.2 million Americans have provided unpaid care to an adult age 50 or older in the prior 12 months.” – AARP Research Report June 2015

#ageinplace #ageathome @Aging20 

 

picture8 picture6 picture4

46.2 million+ people age 65 and over in the US, an increase
10 million or 28% since 2004 …
Est. 82.3 million by 2040

Families are getting smaller
Baby Boomers, Gen-Xs & Millennials thus care will extend further beyond the immediate family with technology expectations.

61.6 million caregivers in the US caring for elderly parents, and spouses and children with disabilities and chronic illnesses.