More than 844,000 Bay State residents serve as family caregivers who provide in-home care for an aging parent or loved one, allowing that person to remain in his or her own home.
These family caregivers have a huge responsibility, and at AARP we’re committed to help lighten their load.
AARP is urging Massachusetts lawmakers to enact legislation called the CARE Act—the Caregiver Advise, Record, Enable (CARE) Act—to better support family caregivers as they safely help Massachusetts seniors stay at home.
What Exactly is The CARE Act?
CARE Act - OnePager - MA Sept Update for SM (pdf) recognizes the critical role family caregivers play in keeping their loved ones out of costly institutions. To that end, the bill features three important provisions:
- The hospital patient is provided with an opportunity to designate a family caregiver;
- The family caregiver is notified if the loved one is to be discharged to another facility or back home; and,
- The facility must provide an explanation and live instruction of the medical tasks – such as medication management, injections, wound care, and transfers – that the family caregiver will perform at home.
Why Massachusetts Needs the CARE Act
- More than half (55 percent) of family caregivers report being overwhelmed by the amount of care their family member needs.
- Nearly 4 in 10 (38 percent) family caregivers report a moderate (20 percent) to high degree (18 percent) of financial strain as a result of providing care.
- In 2014, the majority (60 percent) of family caregivers had full- or part-time jobs.
- In 2010, there were 7.2 potential family caregivers for every person age 80 and older. By 2030, that ratio will fall sharply to 4 to 1, and is projected to drop further to 3 to 1 in 2050.
How Can You Help?
Contact your state legislators today and ask them to support the CARE Act. The Senate Bill is SB1153 and the House Bill is HB2081 Find your state legislators here: state representatives and state senators.
On behalf of Bay State family caregivers, thank you!
Are you a Massachusetts resident with a caregiving story? Please share it with us at iheartcaregivers.org, and find caregiver resources at our Caregiving Resource Center.
For more information about our advocacy for the CARE Act, contact Leslie Siphers at 617-305-0510 or email@example.com.