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Most New Yorkers Caring for Aging Loved Ones Don’t Believe State Government Provides Enough Support

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AARP New York Report on Family Caregiving Finds Mounting Responsibilities, Stresses as State Funding for Aging Services Lags

EN ESPAÑOL | ALBANY, N.Y. – Most New York voters age 40 and older say they don’t believe their state government offers enough support for unpaid family caregivers, and the vast majority of them are extremely or very concerned about the quality of care they would receive in a nursing home, according to a statewide survey released today by AARP New York.

Considering New York State’s rapidly aging population, AARP conducted a telephone survey in fall 2023 on caregiving and long-term care that queried residents age 40-plus who are caring for an aging loved or have done so, and who are registered to vote in New York.

Nearly four in ten family caregivers who responded to the survey for the report – titled “Voters Age 40 and Older in New York State: Their Attitudes and Opinions About Caregiving and Long-Term Care” -- say they care for or have cared for a relative, with the majority of caregivers (66%) being women. One in three caregivers say they care or cared for someone with a decline in mental functioning, such as Alzheimer or dementia.

“Our survey shines a spotlight on an issue that many New Yorkers are living every day as family caregivers,” said AARP New York State Director Beth Finkel. “Across New York State, family caregivers are juggling jobs while raising their children and providing essential help to an aging loved one. These caregivers need the state’s support when it comes to services required by their older adult loved ones, but that support is lagging in most areas because of long waiting lists for home- and community-based services. Our state government leaders must do better by providing enough funding in the next budget to eliminate those lists and ensure older New Yorkers and their caregivers get the support they need.”

The statewide AARP caregiving survey of 1,345 New York registered voters age 40-plus found that 52% do not believe New York State government provides enough support for family caregivers, while 90% are concerned about the quality of care they would receive in a nursing home and whether the facility would have enough staff to provide care.

Nearly 70% of caregivers say they cared for their loved ones while also being employed either full- or part-time. About one in four caregivers took a leave of absence to care, and about one in five either reduced their work hours or gave up working altogether.

Among the report’s other key findings:

  • 82% would prefer to receive long-term care at home with caregiver assistance if they or a family member needed it
  • 80% believe it is extremely or very important to have home- and community-based services available locally
  • 73% say they felt stressed emotionally due to their caregiving responsibilities
  • Nearly all caregivers (94%) say they have incurred personal expenses while caregiving for a loved one, including transportation, home modification and medical equipment

Among the recommendations, AARP New York is advocating:
Eliminate Waiting Lists – Providing $51 million will eliminate the waiting list too many older New Yorkers find themselves languishing on as they and their family caregivers await basic services such as transportation, housekeeping, and personal care.

Increased Transparency -- Require the State Office for the Aging to develop and post detailed reporting of where the waiting list exists by county and service requested, and provide this information to the Governor and Legislature annually as well as an accounting of the prior year’s expenditure, by county and service, on addressing the waiting list.

Nursing Home Oversight – Provide an additional $15 million in funding for New York State’s Long Term Care Ombudsman Program to ensure that all nursing homes and other adult care facilities are visited on a regular basis.

To read the full report and learn more visit: www.aarp.org/NY

Connect with AARP New York on X: @AARPNY and Facebook: AARP New York

About AARP
AARP is the nation's largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering Americans 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With a nationwide presence, AARP strengthens communities and advocates for what matters most to the more than 100 million Americans 50-plus and their families: health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also works for individuals in the marketplace by sparking new solutions and allowing carefully chosen, high-quality products and services to carry the AARP name. As a trusted source for news and information, AARP produces the nation's largest circulation publications, AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit www.aarp.org/about-aarp/, www.aarp.org/español or follow @AARP, @AARPenEspañol and @AARPadvocates on social media.
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About AARP New York
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