5 Facts About Caregiver Burnout That Will Startle You

Caregiving takes a toll. Over time, without support and resources, caregivers can become burned out. They neglect themselves, work long hours, and begin to feel alone, burdened, stressed, or tired. Burnout is the point at which caregivers reach mental, emotional, and physical exhaustion. It affects families, employees, and even you.

Home Health Agencies must be aware of caregiver burnout. It can adversely affect staffing levels, patient satisfaction, and ultimately agency growth.

Here are a few statistics about caregiver burnout that will startle you.

Caregivers may experience a 15% reduction in immune response

Research from the American Psychology Association warns that caregivers are at risk of an impaired immune response. Factors such as stress, depression, and loneliness have negative impacts on how the body responds to threats such as common colds and the flu. A study that followed individuals caring for dementia patients over a four year period found evidence that the effects may be long-term.

In a time when many are concerned about COVID-19 infection and staying well, this news is troublesome.

Only 86% of family caregivers receive respite help.

According to the Caregiving in the U.S 2020 report from the American Association for Retired Persons (AARP) and the National Alliance for Caregiving (NAC), only 14% of those caring for a loved one have used respite care. Some 38% stated they feel it would be helpful. There is obviously a need for help that home care can provide.

82% of home health nurses are women, and most studies show women are at greater risk than men.

Overall, the majority of studies on gender and depression in caregiving, seven out of nine found higher levels of depressive symptomatology in women than in men. That fact alone may not be startling, but when you consider that most of the nurses in home health are women, then that shows how at-risk our employees are. According to recent data among home health nurses, 82.0% of them are women.

A new study shows the most common primary health condition or disability for which caregivers provide care is diabetes.

According to a recent survey of caregivers, the most common health condition, even over dementia or cardiac conditions was diabetes. This shows evidence that the rise in diabetic complications has far-reaching social effects. Home health agencies have an opportunity to provide diabetic teaching and management to this vulnerable population.

The value of the services family caregivers provide for “free,” is estimated at $375 billion a year.

Per the Caregiver action Network, this cost is almost twice as much as is actually spent on homecare and nursing home services combined ($158 billion). Studies show that the caregiver burden is a complex issue affecting many Americans. The fact that so many individuals are providing care to the sick or disabled in our communities for free shows that there is a real need for the home care industry to step up.

Summary

When the sick or needy in our community do not receive the supportive services they need, the costs to our society and economic system are high. An overwhelming number of Americans are caring for loved ones without help and caregiver burnout is an issue of concern. The facts show that there is a growing need for the services that the home health industry provides. As providers, we have a real chance to make a difference.

How Can Alora Help?

Caregiver satisfaction can be influenced by not only patient interaction and work environment, but the tools agency field staff utilize to complete their daily tasks. Alora has been awarded “Easiest to Use” Home Health Software by real caregivers and administrators in Software Advice’s Reviewer’s Choice awards. Reach out to us today for a quick conversation on how our solutions help nurses and admins perform better.

If you enjoyed this article, be sure to follow our resources for more valuable home care industry updates.

Helpful Links:

American Psychology Association

“Caregiving in the U.S. 2020” report

Gender Differences in Psychiatric Morbidity Among Family Caregivers (7 out of 9)

Recent data on home health nurses

Random survey on health conditions

Caregiver statistics from Caregiver Action Network

The Alora Homecare Software Blog

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