AAN News & Opinion
- In 2013, an estimated 40 million family caregivers provided an average of 18 hours of care per week, reflecting approximately $470 billion in unpaid caregiving contributions (Reinhard, Feinberg, Choula, & Houser, 2015). Projected demographic shifts in the U.S., including the rapidly aging population (World Health Organization, 2015) and increase of individuals living with chronic conditions across the lifespan (American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Family Physicians, American College of Physicians, 2011; Houtrow, Larson, Olson, Newacheck, & Halfon, 2014), will increase the demand for family caregivers.
- There remains a gap in meeting the palliative and end-of-life (EOL) care needs, including advance care planning (ACP) needs of ethnic minority, under-resourced, veterans, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) Americans, as well as persons with disabilities and residing in geographically isolated regions. Intersecting socially constructed characteristics influence the lived experience of marginalized communities, including their health-care experiences. These persistent gaps pose a serious barrier to achieving high-quality care, including palliative and EOL care, across the life span of members of these growing populations.