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KHN Column: Obama's Respite Care Plan - Part Of The Problem, Not A Solution

In his latest Kaiser Health News column, Howard Gleckman writes: "President Barack Obama wants to increase funding for a government program intended to make it easier for family caregivers to get respite care. These hard-pressed families desperately need the helping hand. But the White House initiative is a symptom of all that is wrong with long-term-care policy in the U.S." (Kaiser Health News). Read entire column. This information was reprinted from with kind permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, search the archives and sign up for email delivery at kaiserhealthnews.

Positive Lessons From HIV Home-Based Care

Intensive home-based nursing in HIV/AIDS patients significantly improves self-reported knowledge of HIV, awareness of medications, and self-reported adherence to medication programmes, according to a new Cochrane Systematic Review. One home-based care trial included in the review also significantly impacted on HIV stigma, worry, and physical functioning. It did not, however, help improve depressive symptoms, mood, general health, and overall functioning. These conclusions are interesting, but more research is needed to understand the impact of home-based care in developing countries and on important disease outcomes, say the researchers.

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Injured Veterans' Caregivers Face Emotional, Financial Pressures

Caregivers of severely injured veterans and their families face emotional and financial pressures and difficulty accessing military medical care. USA Today reports on the "thousands of unpaid caregivers - parents, spouses, siblings and war buddies - helping veterans injured in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars get through each day. [Barbara Cohoon, deputy director of government relations for the non-profit National Military Family Association] says the caregivers are a vulnerable group, often under-recognized, and in need of help to navigate the military's medical system. Cohoon says not all caregivers receive military benefits, even though many have quit jobs, moved out of their homes and drained their savings to care for their loved ones.

Majority Who Care For A Relative Suffer From Anxiety And Stress, According To Study

Eight out of 1ten people in charge of caring for a relative suffer from anxiety and stress, regardless of their socio-demographic variables. Families, and particularly daughters, assume the "informal care" of dependent elderly people in most of the cases. This follows an investigation carried out by Ruth M Â Calero PĂ rez and directed by professor JosĂ MÂ Roa Venegas at the Department of Developmental and Educational Psychology at the University of Granada. The work in the UGR shows that in some cases this care in the family creates inappropriate behaviour in the relationship, and that the negative effects on the physical, psychological and social caregiver are highly related to the previous life history between caregiver and care recipient, social isolation felt by the caregiver, and the feeling of loneliness in the relationship with the care recipient.

Trial Of Vitamin D Supplementation To Reduce Falls In Nursing Care Facilities

Giving people living in nursing facilities vitamin D can reduce the rate of falls, according to a new Cochrane Review. This finding comes from a study of many different interventions used in different situations. In hospitals, multifactorial interventions and supervised exercise programs also showed benefit. Older people living in nursing facilities or who have been admitted to hospital are much more likely to suffer a fall than those living in the community. In these settings, falls fairly often result in head injuries and fractures, with rates of hip fracture more than ten times higher in nursing facilities than in the community. It is important to try to prevent falls to avoid unnecessary stress for older people and their families, and to reduce pressure on staff and resources.

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Jobs Numbers In Health Sector Defy Recession, More Growth Expected

As most sectors of the economy shed jobs last month, health care companies continued to defy the pattern and hire more people in a trend that's spanned more than two years, Kaiser Health News reports. The main reason is that people are reluctant to skip health care services, even when times are tight, economists say. That factor, combined with an aging population allowed health care business to grow, albeit more slowly than normal, even as the broader economy flagged (Weaver, 1/8). "Across the country, nearly half of the 30 fastest-growing occupations through 2018 are in health care, according the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, " The Boston Globe reports.

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