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Bollens-Lund, Evan

Homebound Status and the Critical Role of Caregiving Support

The homebound population relies on both paid and family caregivers to meet their complex care needs. In order to examine the association between intensity of caregiving support and leaving the home, we identified a population of community-dwelling, homebound Medicare beneficiaries age ≥65 (n = 1,852) enrolled in the 2015 National Health and Aging Trends Study and measured the support they received from paid and family caregivers. Those who had ≥20 h of caregiving support per week had 50% less odds of being "exclusively homebound" (rarely or never leave home) (OR 0.56, p < .01).

Fri, 09/20/2019 - 13:10

Spousal Caregivers Are Caregiving Alone In The Last Years Of Life

Caregiving in the last years of life is associated with increased depression and negative health outcomes for surviving spouses, many of whom are themselves in poor health. Yet it is unclear how often spouses are caregiving alone, how they differ from supported spouses, and whether lack of support affects postbereavement outcomes. We hypothesized that spouses who were solo caregivers--that is, the only caregivers (paid or unpaid) who provided assistance with a spouse's selfcare or household activities--would experience more depression after bereavement than supported spouses would.

Wed, 09/11/2019 - 13:37

A National Profile Of End-Of-Life Caregiving In The United States

To date, knowledge of the experiences of older adults' caregivers at the end of life has come from studies that were limited to specific diseases and so-called primary caregivers and that relied on the recollections of people in convenience samples. Using nationally representative, prospective data for 2011, we found that 900,000 community-dwelling Medicare beneficiaries ages sixty-five and older who died within the following twelve months received support from 2.3 million caregivers. Nearly nine in ten of these caregivers were unpaid.

Mon, 04/08/2019 - 16:07

The Use of Life-Sustaining Procedures in the Last Month of Life Is Associated With More Depressive Symptoms in Surviving Spouses

Context Family caregivers of individuals with serious illness who undergo intensive life-sustaining medical procedures at the end of life may be at risk of negative consequences including depression. Objectives The objective of this study was to determine the association between patients' use of life-sustaining procedures at the end of life and depressive symptoms in their surviving spouses. Methods We used data from the Health and Retirement Study, a longitudinal survey of U.S. residents, linked to Medicare claims data.

Thu, 03/28/2019 - 14:03