Caregiving Statistics

How Many Caregivers in the U.S.?

  • Approximately 43.5 million caregivers have provided unpaid care to an adult or child in the last 12 months. [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]

  • About 34.2 million Americans have provided unpaid care to an adult age 50 or older in the last 12 months. [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]

  • The majority of caregivers (82%) care for one other adult, while 15% care for 2 adults, and 3% for 3 or more adults. [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]

  • About 15.7 million adult family caregivers care for someone who has Alzheimer’s disease or other dementia. [Alzheimer’s Association. (2015). 2015 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures.]

Gender

  • 65% of care recipients are female, with an average age of 69.4. The younger the care recipient, the more likely the recipient is to be male. 45% of recipients aged 18-45 are male, while 33% of recipients aged 50 or higher are male. [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]

  • Upwards of 75% of all caregivers are female, and may spend as much as 50% more time providing care than males. [Institute on Aging. (2016). Read How IOA Views Aging in America.]

  • Male caregivers are less likely to provide personal care, but 24% helped a loved one get dressed compared to 28% of female caregivers. 16% of male caregivers help with bathing versus 30% of females. 40% of male caregivers use paid assistance for a loved one’s personal care. About 14.5 million caregivers are males out of the 43.4% who care for an older family member. [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2009). Caregiving in the U.S.]

Caregiving Tasks

  • On average, caregivers spend:

  • 13 days each month on tasks such as shopping, food preparation, housekeeping, laundry, transportation, and giving medication;

  • 6 days per month on feeding, dressing, grooming, walking, bathing, and assistance toileting;

  • 13 hours per month researching care services or information on disease, coordinating physician visits or managing financial matters. [Gallup-Healthways. (2011). Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.]

  • On average, caregivers perform 1.7 of 6 ADLs, most commonly getting in and out of beds and chairs (43%). [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]

  • On average, caregivers perform 4.2 of 7 IADLs, most commonly transportation (78%), grocery or other shopping (76%), and housework (72%). [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]

  • Caregivers report holding significant decision-making authority regarding the following:

  • Monitoring of the care recipient’s condition and adjusting care (66%);

  • Communicating with healthcare professionals on behalf of the care recipient (63%);

  • Acting as an advocate for the care recipient with care providers, community services, or government agencies (50%). [National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. (2015). Caregiving in the U.S.]


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