The changing profile of caregivers of persons aged 65 years and over with disabilities within a persisting family care model

Pilar Zueras, Jeroen Spijker, Amand Blanes

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20 Citations (Scopus)


© 2017 SEGG Introduction: The increasing participation of women in the workforce may make it difficult to sustain the current model of elderly care. The aim of this article was to determine the changing sociodemographic profile of informal elderly caregivers with disabilities, the interaction between employment and care, and the view of the public on the responsibility of that care. Materials and methods: Cross-sectional analysis of secondary data from four national surveys were used: the disability surveys held in 1999 (N = 3,936) and 2008 (N = 5,257), the 2011-12 National Health Survey (N = 439), and the Family and Gender survey of 2012 (N = 1,359). They were analysed using contingency tables based on gender and age. Results: Half of the informal caregivers were women aged 45 to 64 years. Between 1999 and 2011-12 they became more concentrated in the 55-64 age-bracket, among whom participation in the workforce doubled from 20% to 40%. Increased care for men was associated with unemployment. Care work had a negative impact on working life, with greater impact among women and those who cared for elderly people with severe disabilities. Less likely to consider that elderly care provision should rest on family are 45-54 year-old economically active women (only 42%) or those who are more educated (40%), compared to 60% of economically inactive women and 55% of less educated women. Conclusions: Economically active and educated women are less inclined to family-based care, but assume it independently of their workforce participation, whereas males do so according to their availability.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-72
JournalRevista Espanola de Geriatria y Gerontologia
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018


  • Caregivers
  • Demographic characteristics
  • Elder care
  • Employment status
  • Family


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