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Caregivers Providing End of Life Care Need Support

Caregivers Providing End of Life Care Need Support

The daily demands of caregiving for a loved one who is nearing the end of their life can be emotionally and physically draining. The Hospice Foundation of America estimates that almost half a million people, 68 percent being age 65 or older, received hospice care in 2006. For most, that care involved a family caregiver.

Many family caregivers must deal with not only the time demands and additional responsibilities but also the emotional needs of their loved ones and family. 

End of life care at home services are available to help your loved one through a challenging time in comfortable and familiar surroundings.

According to the National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA), more than one quarter (26.6 percent) of the adult population has provided care for a chronically ill, disabled, or aging family member or friend during the past year. Based on current census data, that translates into more than 50 million people.

The Juggling Act

Recent medical research indicates the stress associated with caregiving can lead to a weakened immune system and in some cases take years off the caregiver's life. Those risks increase when they have to manage caregiving responsibilities while also working or raising a family.

Life can be very stressful for an individual juggling the demands of a job and being a caregiver. Advancing within a career can often be put on hold since completing tasks at work can interfere with caregiving responsibilities.

In many cases, employers will work with the caregiver's changing schedule. Taking time to sit down with a supervisor to explain the situation can be a very good first step to ensuring work commitments are handled. Keeping an employer aware of the situation prevents misinterpretation and promotes better understanding.