Who Is the Family Caregiver?
Generally, the family caregiver is a spouse, partner, child, or other relative who provides a range of assistance for an elderly or disabled person. They can be primary caregivers or secondary caregivers who give direct care or supervise the care given by someone else.
Most are middle aged, and their ages range from 35–64 years old. Ethnicity varies but 21% are both white and African-American, 18% Asian, and 18% Hispanic.
One out of two caregivers are women. Typically, the family caregiver is a daughter or daughter-in-law, but men are becoming increasingly involved. For some elders (about 20%), friends and neighbors fill this role.
What do they have in common- they are all unpaid, do it for love, face their own mortality for providing stressful free care and are bridging burn out? They need respite.
That ‘s why you need a caregiver assessment
If the family is so overwhelmed by the care that they are considering placement, this threat should trigger the GCM to do a caregiver assessment immediately. If the GCM is called to relocate an older person and the underlying cause seems to be caregiver burnout, this can be another trigger for a caregiver assessment. If caregiver abuse is suspected, a caregiver assessment is a critical immediate tool. This is a situation where the GCM must contact Adult Protective Services, following their own state’s laws. Elder abuse can be triggered by caregiver stress in some situations. Depression that reaches a clinical level in a caregiver can be predictive of elder abuse of an elderly client can prompt a GCM to do a caregiver assessment. You should also do a geriatric depression scale at the same time. Use the GDS and the caregiver assessment to help both the caregiver and the care receiver at the same time.
It’s the darkest day of the year but sunlight comes tomorrow. Family caregivers need the light back in their life. They often break down during the holiday. If they are a part of dysfunctional family and are either hands on, long distance or local Mom or Dad caregivers —managing an aging parent during the festive season can be agony.
Maybe their parent is not grateful for their he sacrifice ,really depressed by a holiday, filled with an ill aging parent they never liked or not just burnt-out but electrocuted .
A geriatric care manager is an expert in crisis management but also coach who educates and supports. What most conflicted caregivers need to get unstuck and see a path forward, especially bluest season, the holidays?
A GCM cannot be Santa but here are some more steps a geriatric care manager can transform these families and caregivers after they call on the holiday.
Caregiver support and education: The GCM can be instrumental in helping adult children understand that ambivalence, stress, and fear are normal and common aspects of the care-giving role. Furthermore, the GCM can reassure the caregiver that our own professional experience and expertise allow us to offer a measure of predictability where, for the caregiver, none appears. By identifying concrete options and developing a positive plan for action, the GCM enables the family to move forward.