Are You A Caregiver?
Approximately 1.3 million Ohioans provide some level of care for a loved one who is older or who has a disability. You may be a caregiver if:
- You feel like you've swapped roles with a parent, spouse or other family member.
- You help someone with chores like cleaning, grocery shopping, cooking or transporation.
- You help someone with daily activities, such as bathing, dressing and eating.
- You help someone manage his finances, file insurance claims or pay bills.
- You skip meals or forgo exercise and the things you enjoy because someone needs you.
Brochure: 10 Questions That May Change Your Life (and the lives of the people in it)
Whom Does Caregiving Affect?
In Ohio, family caregivers provide care that, if provided by paid caregivers, would cost $14.2 billion each year. Caregivers are spouses, children, grandchildren, grandparents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, friends, neighbors and more.
Approximately 60 percent of family caregivers are women, many of whom have their own families and jobs. More than three out of five workers have had to make some adjustment to their work life, from reporting late to giving up work entirely, to care for a loved one. Ten percent of family caregivers go from full-time to part-time jobs because of caregiving responsibilities.
Fact sheet: Whom Does Caregiving Affect?
Lifespan Respite Care
The Department of Aging is working with the Ohio Family Children First Council and the newly formed Ohio Respite Coalition to enhance respite services across Ohio. Lifespan respite care programs are coordinated systems of accessible, community-based respite care services for family caregivers of children or adults with special needs. For more information, on lifespan respite and caregiver support programs visit www.caregiver.org and www.archrespite.org.
In March 2011, state partners held the Ohio Respite Summit to support the lifespan respite grant application that was submitted to and funded by the Administration on Aging.
Summit Summary Report
According to the National Family Caregivers Association, more than 90 percent of people who recognize themselves as caregivers become more proactive, engaged and confident, and provide better care as a result. Caregivers who access and use support services also report fewer negative emotions, such as depression, anxiety and anger. Through the National Family Caregiver Support Program, your Area Agency on Aging is ready to assist you with supports that may include:
- Care training, resources and information;
- Caregiver support groups;
- Respite care;
- Adult day services;
- Home delivered meals programs;
- and more.
Caregiving has many faces in Ohio, and includes situations in which grandparents or other relatives or friends become primary caregivers for children when their parents are unable or unavailable to do so. These arrangements can be temporary, but often are permanent. In a system that typically favors the immediate family, these "extended" families often face unique challenges. The Department of Aging proudly supports KinshipOhio, a collaborative effort to ensure all kin caregivers are directed toward and able to access available supports.