Women Caring for Disabled Parents and Other Relatives: Implications for Social Workers in the Health Services

Revital Gross, Shuli Brammli-Greenberg, Netta Bentur

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Caring for an ill or disabled relative is a life experience shared by many women. Based on data from a representative sample of women in Israel, this study examined the demographic, employment, and health characteristics of women caregivers, focusing on the extent of care provided and its effect on the caregiver's physical and mental health. Using the conceptual framework of caregiving-related stress, we compared women who care for a parent, and women who care for another relative. The study found more instrumental difficulties, which lead to greater burden, among women who care for a disabled relative who is not a parent. Furthermore, larger proportions of women caring for a disabled relative who is not a parent report depressive mood symptoms, poor health status, and the need for psychological counseling. The findings suggest that formal service providers, chiefly social workers, may better support women caregivers once they are aware of the needs arising from disparate contexts of care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-37
Number of pages19
JournalSocial Work in Health Care
Volume37
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The study was funded by a grant from The Commonwealth Fund, and conducted in cooperation with Cathy Schoen, Joan Leiman, and Elizabeth Simantov of The Commonwealth Fund, whom the authors wish to thank for their contribution.

Keywords

  • Informal caregiving
  • Social workers
  • Women's health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Community and Home Care

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