AARP AARP States Virginia Caregiving

Virginia Family Caregivers Provide $11.8 Billion in Unpaid Care

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New report reveals stress on family caregivers’ health and finances; identifies policies to help support caregivers

 

WASHINGTON, DC — Family caregivers in Virginia provided 956 million hours of care—worth an estimated $11.8 billion—to their parents, spouses, partners, and other adult loved ones in 2013, according to AARP Public Policy Institute’s new report, Valuing the Invaluable: 2015 Update. The total estimated economic value of uncompensated care provided by the nation’s family caregivers surpassed total Medicaid spending ($449 billion), and nearly equaled the annual sales ($469 billion) of the four largest U.S. tech companies combined (Apple, Hewlett Packard, IBM, and Microsoft) in 2013.

 

Family caregiving for relatives or close friends with chronic, disabling, or serious health problems so they can remain in their home is nearly universal today. In 2013, about 1 million family caregivers in Virginia helped another adult loved one carry out daily activities (such as bathing or dressing, preparing meals, administering medications, driving to doctor visits, and paying bills).    

 

“This new report demonstrates that we need to do more to assist the 1 million caregivers in our state,” said Interim AARP Virginia State Director Peter Goldin. “Some of the things that will help family caregivers include improved workplace flexibility, respite care, tax credits, and home care services.”

 

Family Caregivers in the Future

As Americans live longer and have fewer children, fewer family members will be available for older adults to rely on for everyday help in the future. The ratio of potential family caregivers to the growing number of older people has already begun a steep decline. 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.  

 

Impact of Caregiving on Jobs, Money, and Health

Family caregivers report that the stress of caregiving affects their physical and emotional health, finances, and their jobs.

  • More than half (55%) of family caregivers report being overwhelmed by the amount of care their family member needs.
  • Nearly 4 in 10 (38%) family caregivers report a moderate (20%) to high degree (18%) of financial strain as a result of providing care.
  • In 2014, the majority (60%) of family caregivers had full- or part-time jobs.

 

Strategies and Policies Needed to Help Caregivers

“AARP strongly supports the CARE Act that recently passed in Virginia,” said Goldin. The CARE Act will help family caregivers when their loved ones go into the hospital and as they return home.

Goldin added, “We also need to work on a broader plan that involves both the public and private sectors to support family caregivers here in Virginia.”

 

Valuing the Invaluable: 2015 Update” Methodology

The estimates in this report by AARP’s Public Policy Institute are based on a meta-analysis of 11 U.S.-based surveys of family caregivers conducted between 2009 and 2014. Estimates are based on about 40 million caregivers providing an average of 18 hours of care per week to a parent, spouse/partner, or other adult loved one, at an average value of $12.51 per hour. ‘Caregiver’ is defined as an adult age 18 and older providing care to a parent, spouse, or other adult loved one with their daily activities such as bathing or dress, preparing meals, and/or managing their finances, currently or within the last month.

 

Caregiving Resources:

 

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About AARP

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of nearly 38 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services. A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin; www.aarp.org ; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Español, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates. The AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors, and sponsors. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at www.aarp.org .

 

 

 

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