Physicians May Overlook Needs Of Caregivers

The New York Times (11/18, Gross) “The New Old Age” blog reports that according to an article published March 12 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, physicians may overlook the needs of caregivers, ignoring the needs of people who care for “an elderly family member with dementia or a heart condition or diabetes — or all of the above.”

Recently, the author of that article, Ronald D. Adelman, MD, co-chief of geriatrics and palliative medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, gave a talk on that very subject in which he detailed “the risk factors for caregiver burden that should ‘trigger assessment,’” such as “being a woman; the number of hours of care provided; the complexity of medical tasks” being performed; “transitions from one kind and location of care to another,” stress caused by finances; lack of caregiver education; presence of cognitive impairment in the patient; whether the caregiver actually lives with the patient, and finally, whether the caregiver had any choice in taking on that role.

Related Links:

— “Seeing the ‘Invisible Patient’,” Jane Gross, New York Times, November 17, 2014.

Posted in In The News.