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Longacre ML, Valdmanis VG, Handorf EA, Fang CY
Work Impact and Emotional Stress Among Informal Caregivers for Older Adults
J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci (2017) 72:522-531.
Objectives: With the growing aging population and reliance on informal caregivers in the United States, many individuals will take on the role of caregiver as an adult. We examined whether informal caregivers experience work interference or a change in work status (i.e., retiring/quitting) due to caregiving. We also explored whether experiencing work interference or a change in work status was associated with greater emotional stress. Method: This secondary analysis is drawn from the Fifth National Survey of Older Americans Act (OAA) program participants, which included 1,793 family caregivers. The present analysis is on caregivers of working age (18-64 years) providing care to another adult, which included 922 caregivers. Ordinal logit models were used to assess associations between experiencing work interference or a change in work status and emotional stress. Study weights were applied for all analyses. Results: At the time of the survey, more than half (52.9%) of caregivers were employed full- or part-time. Among nonworking caregivers (i.e., not working or retired) at the time of the survey, 39.8% responded that they had quit or retired early due to caregiving demands. Among employed caregivers, 52.4% reported that informal caregiving had interfered with their employment. Importantly, those respondents who reported work interference or a change in work status were more likely to report higher levels of emotional stress associated with caregiving demands. Discussion: These findings suggest the need to further explore work among informal caregivers and associations with emotional stress, as well as consider work-based policy approaches, organizational and/or societal, to support informal caregivers.
Publication Date: 2017-05-01.
Last updated on Saturday, August 22, 2020