More Caregivers Needed

McKnight’s had an article on a recent study showing more than 30% of older adults who are caregivers are also receiving care to assist with completing their own daily activities. Vulnerable caregivers are more likely to care for a spouse. Often they are older with health issues and limited financial assets according to the report published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Among the older caregivers, 32% were giving care to other older individuals while needing assistance with their own activities of daily living. Those activities may include personal hygiene, getting dressed or transferring out of bed.

Instead of making simple distinctions between “caregivers” and “care recipients,” clinicians, researchers and policymakers need to acknowledge that there’s an overlap and potentially dynamic nature of these roles among older populations. That is, some people can be both and their needs represent a unique group instead of just focusing on people who give care and those who receive it.