Date of Award:

12-2009

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Family, Consumer, and Human Development

Advisor/Chair:

Kathleen Piercy

Abstract

Large numbers of baby boomers and a shift towards home-based long-term care designate a need for a greater understanding of caregiver attitudes surrounding the financing of long-term home-based care. This study examined more fully the types of home-based long-term care services that family caregivers were utilizing for their parents. In addition, the willingness and ability of caregivers to privately fund these services for aging parents were explored. The study utilized a preexisting data set of qualitative interviews that were conducted with 30 family caregivers helping to provide long-term care for an elderly parent or older-generation relative. Participants in the sample used many home- and community-based services such as home health aides and nurses, physical therapists, cleaning services and adult day centers. Often these services were funded via Medicare, Medicaid, care recipient funds, state programs, and caregiver funds. In addition, caregivers were often willing, but unable to pay for long-term parent care on their own. Many caregivers in the study found paying for long-term parent care unnecessary. Family expectations, moral and religious responsibility, and a high aversion to nursing home care were cited as reasons for willingness to fund long-term care at home. Similarly, lack of family support and other personal obstacles were noted as reasons for inability to pay for care. Those who found payment for care unnecessary noted that care recipients had sufficient funds for their own long-term care.

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