The invaluable role of informal caregivers in supporting our senior family members in their natural physical and social environments cannot be overstated. However, it’s essential to recognize the challenges they face. Disparities in the availability and affordability of social services, coupled with the evolving needs of dependent seniors, often place an immense burden on caregivers. This burden can be isolating because it is typically not shared.
Our colleague Jiri has conducted groundbreaking research to address these pressing issues. Using empirical evidence and data from a representative sample of informal caregivers in the Czechia, Jiri has proposed specific interventions to mitigate the negative effects of caregiving.
A key finding is that 86% of caregivers find the engagement of other relatives helpful, with 36% considering it very useful. This underscores the importance of shared caregiving arrangements, especially when the required care is substantial.
It is time to acknowledge the latent and neglected issue of unmet caregiver needs. Prioritizing caregiver well-being is not just a matter of compassion; it’s essential to the quality of informal care and caregiver empowerment. Let us join hands in advocating for increased family caregiver engagement and implement shared-care arrangements to ensure caregivers receive the support they deserve.