The in Owings Mills, Maryland, has announced the initial findings of its .
Launched in 2009, the three-year, $15 million effort set out to identify the benefits of and best practices with respect to supporting family and informal caregivers, who provide as much as 80 percent of all long-term care for the chronically ill and disabled. An (20 pages, PDF) of data collected by fourteen organization in nine states found that well-thought-out supports and services helped to significantly reduce caregiver stress and depression while saving approximately $38 million in either out-of-pocket expenses for the care recipient/family or government reimbursements.
The analysis also found that 74 percent of family and informal caregivers are women and that nearly 40 percent are daughters of the care recipient; that 62 percent of family and informal caregivers are between 36 and 64 years old; and that roughly 33 percent of all caregivers provided care for at least five years, often resulting in severe stress and financial strain.
"The foundation will release much more detailed evaluation findings in the months ahead, but a great deal has already been learned about the initiative's impact and informal caregivers themselves," said Weinberg Foundation president Rachel Garbow Monroe. "We know these projects touched the lives of at least three hundred thousand family and informal caregivers, and we were able to directly assess the impact on the lives of just over fourteen hundred of those individuals."