U.S. News & World Report

WHY CARING FOR ADULTS IS GETTING COSTLIER

by Kimberly Palmer / December 3, 2014

 

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Kenneth Matos​, senior director of research at the Families and Work Institute, notes that 1 in every 4 households in the country is performing some degree of elder care, and that ratio is growing. Unlike ​child care, he says, adult caregiving tends to be less predictable, and as a result, can be harder to manage with other responsibilities like work. “With elder care, you don’t know when [the older adult] might get better and can’t predict their capacity. With child care, they get sick and then get better in a few days,” he said at the GSA conference. Child care is also generally a happier task and more joyful than caring for someone in decline.

According to ​research by the Families and Work Institute, 29 percent of employed caregivers say they need “help balancing their work and family responsibilities,” and 70 percent of caregivers say they arrive late, leave early, take time off or adapt in other ways to make it possible to both work and be a caregiver. Matos notes that being a caregiver encompasses a range of duties, from maintaining medical records to being a patient advocate.

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