The Policy Issue Of Family Caregivers

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Policy Issue:
I chose to focus on the policy issue of family caregivers, who provide unpaid care to an ill or disabled loved one especially older adults. According to Gordon and Barrington (2016), there are almost 35 million Americans who provide care for adult family members and friends aged 50 or older with limited activities of daily living such as bathing; and instrumental activities of daily living such as preparing meal, and managing medications. Gordon and Barrington (2016) also mentioned that the family caregivers spend almost 40 hours per week to take care of their older relatives. Family members are the primary source of unpaid caregiving for older adults aging at their home. The role of a family member as a primary providers
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The caregiving can impact income, and health of a caregiver. Gordon and Barrington (2016) mentioned that the female caregiver might fall into poverty because of the wage gap and career interruptions. Likewise, the time required to provide care can produce burden and cause stress. In addition, older adults themselves might be living in poverty, thus providing care with limited resources can be very challenging for family caregivers with low-income. For instance: the family with low-income may not afford home health care or assistance when needed as compare to their counterparts. The situation is worst for the minority family caregivers. Therefore, minority families and families with low-income will need support services to preserve their role as a caregivers. There is a need of a policy that will not only meet the demand of older adults and help them age in place with dignity and safely, but also provide supportive services to the family caregivers with low-income and color.
Gordon and Barrington (2016) mentioned about two main solutions that will need policymakers and congressmen attention. They are to improve and strengthen older adult support system to relive pressure on family caregivers, and to implement new and expand existing policy to support family caregivers. The ways to improve older adult support system include improving Social Security and
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