Family and friend caregivers include relatives, partners, neighbors, and friends supporting people who require assistance due to illness, disability, or frailty.1 This support can be physical, emotional, or financial and may include help with activities of daily living and medical tasks.2 Caregivers may experience a range of emotions in their role, both positive and negative, and may also face specific challenges to their physical and mental health, including isolation or strain.3 Support services, such as respite care, counseling, training, support groups, and education, can improve caregivers’ wellbeing and their ability to manage their caregiving responsibilities.
Supporting caregivers who support their members is critical for health plans and providers that serve individuals dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, for ensuring the wellbeing of caregivers, as well as for ensuring quality health care outcomes for the individual. Resources for Integrated Care (RIC) features a range of resources to assist health plans and providers serving dually eligible individuals in supporting caregivers, including webinars and written products highlighting promising practices in caregiver supports. Many of these resources include the voices of caregivers themselves
Culturally Competent Caregiver Supports
Family & Friend Caregivers of Older Adults
1 Reinhard, S. C., Fox-Grage, W., Friss Feinberg, L., Coulter Edwards, B., Downie, J., and Moscardino, D. (2017). Emerging Innovations in Managed Long-Term Services and Supports for Family Caregivers. AARP Public Policy Institute. Retrieved from http://www.longtermscorecard.org/publications/promising-practices/emerging-innovations-ltss.
2 Family Caregiver Alliance. (2019). Caregiver Statistics: Demographics. Retrieved from https://www.caregiver.org/caregiver-statistics-demographics.
3 Reinhard, S. C., Young, H. M., Levine, C., Kelly, K., Choula, R., and Accius, J. (2019). Home Alone Revisited: Family Caregivers Providing Complex Care. AARP Public Policy Institute. Retrieved from https://www.aarp.org/ppi/info-2018/home-alone-family-caregivers-providing-complex-chronic-care.html.