Unpaid Family Caregivers Need Support Now

Route Fifty has published an op-ed, "Unpaid Family Caregivers Need Support Now," by Rani E. Snyder, MPA, Vice President for Program at The John A. Hartford Foundation.

The op-ed discusses how caregiving for a close relative or friend is financially, physically and emotionally taxing. Research by RAND Corp., for instance, "shows that family caregivers lose a staggering $522 billion in wages every year while caring for a close relative or friend." Direct care providers support many family caregivers, but Rani Snyder points out that direct care providers "are often undertrained and work grueling hours for low pay and limited benefits. One in eight direct care workers lives in poverty, and three-quarters earn less than the average living wage, according to research published in Health Affairs."

The op-ed also discusses examples of recent state-based work and details some of the 26 recommendations from the congressionally authorized RAISE (Recognize, Assist, Include, Support, & Engage) Family Caregiving Advisory Council. "Specifically, the RAISE Council recommends implementing solutions like providing counseling to family caregivers, respite care and peer support to family caregivers and training on common in-home medical tasks." The RAISE recommendations provide a policy roadmap to aid caregivers and also address the needs of the nation’s direct-care workforce.

To read the op-ed, click here.

Visit the John A. Hartford Foundation website for more information.

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