Latino Alzheimer’s caregivers: What is important to them?

  • Arévalo-Flechas L
  • Acton G
  • Escamilla M
 et al. 
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Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to describe the perception and psychosocial impact of caregiving for Latino family caregivers of patients with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias and compare them to non-Hispanic (NH) white caregivers. Design/methodology/approach: The paper opted for a survey design using the Screen for Caregiver Burden, Perceived Stress Scale, Short Form 36 Health Survey, Symptom Questionnaire, Center for Epidemiologic Depression, Sense of Coherence, Coping Resources Inventory, and the Personal Resource Questionnaire (PRQ-85). A total of 202 participants with 53 Latino caregivers (majority were Mexican-Americans) and 149 NH white caregivers also completed an in-depth qualitative interview describing their experience as caregivers. Findings: Latino caregivers, as compared to NH white caregivers, have higher subjective and objective caregiver burden and lower general health, social function, and physical function. They also reported higher levels of bodily pain and somatic symptoms. Caregivers experience a great deal of stress that can adversely affect their emotional and physical well-being. Latino cultural values influence the meaning ascribed to caregiving and how caregivers attempt to balance a perceived duty to family. Research limitations/implications: The sample was a convenience sample of caregivers responding to an invitation to participate. The Latino sample included primarily caregivers of Mexican-American descent and represented Latinos living in the South West section of the USA. Future research needs to include Latinos of diverse nationalities. Practical implications: The paper points out crucial differences between NH white and Latino caregivers. Understanding how Latino cultural values influence how Latinos perform and feel about caregiving duties may facilitate support for caregivers. Originality/value: This paper fulfills an identified need to study Latino caregiving. Two bilingual and bicultural researchers were part of the research team facilitating the collection and analysis of qualitative data. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)(journal abstract)

Author-supplied keywords

  • Cross-cultural studies
  • Cultural studies
  • Ethnic groups
  • Family
  • Family roles

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Authors

  • Lyda C. Arévalo-Flechas

  • Gayle Acton

  • Monica I. Escamilla

  • Peter N. Bonner

  • Sharon L. Lewis

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