The ALS Association is proud of its tradition of leadership in providing comprehensive programs and services for ALS caregivers. Along with those programs and with the assistance of the National Family Caregivers Association, our continuing partner in recognition of November as National Family Caregiver's Month, we are pleased to present to you the following information for caregivers.
Family Caregiving Statistics
More than one quarter (26.6%) of the adult population has provided care for a chronically ill, disabled or aged family member or friend during the past year. Based on current census data, that translates into more than 50 million people. Source: National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA) Random Sample Survey of 1000 Adults, Funded by CareThere.com, Summer, 2000.
is no longer predominantly a women's issue. Men now make up 44% of the
caregiving population. Source: National Family Caregivers Association
(NFCA) Random Sample Survey of 1000 Adults, Funded by CareThere.com,
value of the services family caregivers provide for "free" is estimated
to be $257 billion a year. Source: Peter S. Arno, "Economic Value of
Informal Caregiving," presented at the American Association of Geriatric
Psychiatry, February 24, 2002.
one half of the US population has a chronic condition. Of these 41
million were limited in their daily activities. Twelve million are
unable to go to school, to work, or to live independently. Source:
Chronic Care in America (Institute for Health & Aging, Univ. of
CA/SF for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) 1996.
over 85 years of age are the fastest growing segment of the population.
Half of them need some help with personal care. Source: US Bureau of
the Census Statistical Brief, Sixty Five Plus in the United States, May
caregivers with a history of chronic illness themselves who are
experiencing caregiving related stress have a 63% higher mortality rate
than their non-caregiving peers. Source: Journal of the American Medical
Association, December 15, 1999, Vol. 282, No. 23.
pool of family caregivers is dwindling. In 1990 there were 11 potential
caregivers for each person needing care. In 2050 that ratio will be
4:1. Source: Chronic Care in America - as above.
percent (61%) of "intense" family caregivers (those providing at least
21 hours of care a week) have suffered from depression. Some studies
have shown that caregiver stress inhibits healing. Source: National
Family Caregivers Association/Fortis Long Term Care (Caregiving Across
the Life Cycle) 1998; Lancet 1995; 346 (Slowing of Wound Healing by
Psychological Stress - Kiecolt-Glaser, JK et al).
caregivers who provide significant time and effort in caring for a
loved one, especially spousal caregivers, do not get consistent help
from other family members. One study has shown that as many as three
fourths of these caregivers are "going it alone." Source: Caregiving
Across the Life Cycle - as above.
80% of home care services are provided by family caregivers. Source: US
General Accounting Office (GAO/HEHS 95-26, "Long-Term Care: Diverse,
Growing Population Includes Millions of Americans of All Ages") 1994.
recent study calculated that American businesses loses between $11
billion and $29 billion each year due to employees' need to care for
loved ones 50 years of age and older. Source: National Alliance for
Caregiving/Met Life (Met Life Study of Employer Costs for Working
nine percent of the adult population either is or expects to be a
family caregiver. Source: National Family Caregivers Association (Random
Sample Survey of 1,000 Adults Sponsored by Aleve).
The National Family Caregiver's Association has also compiled state-by-state statistics on the economic impact of family caregiving. Click here to view the statistics in Adobe Acrobat format. For more information, please visit http://www.nfcacares.org/.
The National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP have released "Caregiving in the US," an update to the 1997 National Caregiver Survey. The research report and supporting documents are available on the Alliance web site at http://www.caregiving.org/.