What does a family caregiver get out of a caregiver assessment? A caregiver assessment will give the care manager the ability to understand the caregiver’s needs then define the caregiver’s problems. It will arm the care manger with the ability to pin point the resources of caregiver and the family so that the family can muster those resources.
Another benefit of a caregiver assessment is to give the caregiver a voice. The research from California’s Caregiver Resources Center’s (CRCS) a program that has been doing caregiver assessment since 1988, tells us that caregiver’s who care for family member’s with cognition impairment really appreciate a caregiver assessment and see it as an opportunity to express their own needs and have their care taken seriously
One trigger for a GCM to do a caregiver assessment is intake, when you start services with the client . If the family caregiver is in burnout, this is an emergency. But generally, the caregiver should be assessed after the GCM has fully assessed the care receiver. All services should be in place for the care receiver initially because the caregiver will usually be totally focused on the care receiver and unwilling to be distracted to concentrate on their own problems. In a second visit the GCM can then assess the caregiver.
Another trigger is hospitalization. The older client will be discharged with a new care plan that night involve, injection tiring to prevent bed sores, new medical equipment like a Hoyer life or asking the family caregiver to give care they have absolutely no training for. Or the care might be onerous to the caregiver, like bathing a mother when you are a son. This triggers a family caregiver assessment when the care receiver is in the hospital. Perhaps another adult child needs to do they care or paid caregivers are needs
Another trigger might be an injury of a caregiver without hospitalization. What if they fall shoveling snow in a blizzard like the one about to hit the east coast and can’t help with ADLS for a few days. This should trigger a caregiver assessment. Good luck to any caregiver in any emergency l Blizzard Stormageddon
Although family and informal caregivers make up 78% of the long-term care system in the United States, geriatric care managers and aging professionals have not focused on them . The actual backbone that supports the the aging client is the unpaid family caregiver .
Family caregivers’ are overwhelmed by caregiver burnout, stress and overload. Aging professionals and geriatric care managers need to begin to see caregivers and care receivers as one organism. Caregivers are part of a homeostatic system including the care receiver and one cannot be separated from the other. If the caregiver’s functional and psychosocial needs go unmet then the whole care plan falls apart. So the aging professional needs to take a whole-family approach and see that they have multiple clients, including the older person and the family caregivers. This they need to do a caregiver assessment