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The program was great! It came at a time when I was at my all-time lowest. The combination of the sessions with your counselors and the service to help my aunt was a tremendous help. They gave me what I needed at the right time. Words cannot explain how valuable United HomeCare was to me.
Dulce A., Caregiver on the impact of Community Reach II

News

Family Caregivers in Need of Stress Relief Can Turn to a New Support Group from United HomeCare for Help

January 26, 2012

MIAMI, Fla. – January 26, 2012 – The Caregiver Resource Center at United HomeCare, South Florida’s largest home health agency, is offering a new Stress Relief Support Group for Family Caregivers, designed to teach stress management skills and provide information about community care resources.

“Caregivers will learn how to manage stress and improve their quality of life, which will ultimately make them resilient caregivers to help manage the responsibilities of caring for their loved ones,” explained support group facilitator Guadalupe Rodriguez, a licensed clinical social worker with United HomeCare. “Caregivers commonly suffer from a decline in emotional and physical well-being, social isolation, depression, and financial hardship as a result of their caregiving responsibilities. They need to also take care of themselves, and that’s where the support group can help.”

The weekly support group sessions will be held on Friday afternoons from 12:00 to 1:30 p.m., starting January 27 through March 16. Participants will learn coping skills and explore the benefits of self care, problem solving, journal writing, mental imagery, deep breathing and muscle relaxation. They will also learn about community resources and case management services for elderly and/or disabled adults.

The support group is free and includes a light lunch. Participants must register by calling Blanca Ceballos at (305) 328-0875, as space is limited. Additional Stress Relief Support Groups will be held throughout the year, with a second series beginning in April.

“Tens of thousands of family caregivers live and work in Miami-Dade County, and on average, they spend about 20 hours per week providing care,” said José Fox, president and chief executive officer of United HomeCare. “These individuals are the backbone of long-term care in our community. They need our support, which is why United HomeCare established the Caregiver Resource Center and is committed to offering educational opportunities like the Stress Relief Support Group.”

The Caregiver Resource Center at United HomeCare is the first in Miami dedicated exclusively to assisting non-professional caregivers for frail elderly or disabled adults. Located in Doral at 8400 NW 33rd Street, Suite 400, the center offers the community-at-large free information about long term care and private care, links to community resources, caregiver education, support groups and wellness activities in a beautiful space that is welcoming to family caregivers.

The Caregiver Resource Center is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 AM to 6:00 PM. A monthly calendar of activities for caregivers is available online at www.unitedhomecare.com. For more information, call 305-716-0710.       

Caregiver Health and Wellness

 

·         More than half (55 percent) of caregivers report that they feel overwhelmed by the amount of care their aging or chronically ill family member requires.

 

·         Caregivers are more likely than those in the general population to report they are doing a poor/fair job at several healthy behaviors, including managing stress (45 percent vs. 39 percent) and getting enough sleep (42 percent vs. 32 percent).

 

·         Caregivers are not only more likely to report stress, but also report it at a higher level than is reported by the general public. On a scale of 1 to 10 where 1 is little or no stress and 10 is a great deal of stress, the mean level of stress reported by caregivers was 6.5 as compared to 5.2 by the general public.

 

·         Caregivers are more likely than those in the general population to have a chronic illness (82 percent vs. 61 percent).

 

·         Caregivers are more likely to report experiencing physical (94 percent vs. 76 percent) and non-physical (91 percent vs. 71 percent) symptoms of stress when compared to the general population. In particular, caregivers are far more likely than the general population to lay awake at night (60 percent vs. 44 percent), overeat or eat unhealthy foods (53 percent vs. 39 percent) or skip a meal (48 percent vs. 29 percent) because of stress.

 

·         Caregivers are more likely than the general population to report that they get sick five times a year or more (17 percent vs. 6 percent).

 

(Source: Stress in America: Our Health At Risk from the American Psychological Association, January 2012)

 

About United HomeCare

United HomeCare (UHC) is a private 501(c)(3) non-profit home health and community care organization dedicated to making people’s lives better with proven quality-of-life solutions delivered in the comfort of home settings. Based in Miami, Florida, UHC is a trusted industry leader known for pioneering advances in home care programs, disease management services, and educational support programs to help families care for elderly and disabled relatives in homes or other community settings. To learn more about United HomeCare, please call 305-716-0710 or visit www.unitedhomecare.com.