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The Role Of A Multicomponent Home-Health Intervention In Reducing Caregiver Stress In Singapore: A Qualitative Study

Michael J. Penkunas, Angelique Chan, Chek Hooi Wong, Dirk Frans de Korne, See Mieng Tan, Sweet Fun Wong
Published 2018 · Medicine, Psychology
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Purpose The relationship between caregiving and negative health outcomes is well established in the literature. Previous studies have shown that community-based programs reduce caregiver stress. However, the mechanisms by which this happens have not been well investigated. This qualitative study examines caregivers' experiences as a part of the Aging-In-Place intervention, a home-health program in Singapore targeted at frequently hospitalized patients and their caregivers. Method We interviewed 32 caregivers to study the underlying processes by which caregiver stress was ameliorated. Transcripts from semistructured interviews were analyzed thematically within the theoretical framework of the stress process model. Results Primary stressors related to routine patient care were reduced through the intervention program that provided health monitoring to patients and facilitated linkages to community-based services. Increased access to advice and medical information provided by intervention staff reduced caregivers' uncertainty, a substantial secondary stressor. Caregivers who employed a foreign domestic worker (FDW) gained additional reductions in both primary and secondary stressors. Discussion The multidimensional home-health intervention reduced both primary and secondary stressors for caregivers. FDWs constituted a resource that caregivers could rely on and the training provided to FDWs by intervention staff further reduced caregiver stress. Implications for program planning and future research are discussed.
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