208551 Job demands among personal care assistants caring for family member

Wednesday, November 11, 2009: 8:45 AM

Jane Lipscomb, PhD, RN , School of Nursing, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD
Kate McPhaul, PhD, MPH, RN , Work and Health Research Center, University of Maryland Baltimore, Baltimore, MD
JiSun Choi, MSN , Department of Family and Community Health, University of Maryland School of Nursing, Baltimore, MD
Rosemary K. Sokas, MD, MOH, MSc , Office of Occupational Medicine, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Washington, DC
Leslie A. Nickels , Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health, Chicago, IL
Joseph Zanoni , Continuing Education and Outreach Illinois Occupational and Environmental Education and Research Center, School of Public Health, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Approximately 17,700 homecare agencies and organizations operate in the United States. To supplement the agency model, especially for the provision of personal care, a growing number of states have adopted “consumer-directed” programs. A unique aspect of these programs in some states is the consumers' ability to hire a family member or friend to provide homecare services. However, a number of states prohibit home care workers from caring for family members, presumably because of concerns that this work should not be compensated or that the service is not legitimate. We had the opportunity to compare the work demands of caring for a family member and non-family members in a self-administered survey of 980 Personal Care Assistants (PCAs) working in an urban area in a large Midwest state. Greater than 20% of this population (n=194) care for family members exclusively. We compared the work demands of this group of workers compared with 663 PCAs who cared for non-family members. Findings include that significant differences between the work demands of these two populations included greater physical demands, mean demand score (.74 vs. .52), greater mean emotional demand score (2.08 vs. 1.59) and lower mean work-related burnout (1.06 vs. 1.23). Additionally, PCAs caring for family members reported a significantly greater number of unpaid visits and on-call hours, as well as more out of pocket expenses than those caring for non-family members. The implications of these finding will be discussed.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the implications of being paid to provide care to family members. Discuss possible job hazards associated with provided care to family members over non-family members

Keywords: Health Disparities, Home Care

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have the educational and research experience to report on this population.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.