The New Normal: Family Caregiving in the Context of an Aging Society

|The New Normal: Family Caregiving in the Context of an Aging Society
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Laura Gitlin

Dean of Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions

Although families have always cared for and supported older adults, the landscape of caregiving is dramatically changing due to unprecedented changes in population dynamics. More people are living longer; there’s the rise of chronic diseases and the absence of a long-term care system. Families must assume more care responsibilities than ever before and juggle multiple demands including employment, child rearing, and their own health conditions as they too age. In addition, the number of families available to provide what in many cases is extraordinary care is shrinking.

Laura N. Gitlin, PhD, distinguished University professor and Dean of the Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions, explores the implications of the demographics of an aging society on family caregiving, roles that families assume and the challenges and consequences for health care.