Formal Health and Social Services That Directly and Indirectly Benefit Stroke Caregivers: A Scoping Review of Access and Use Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Stroke can be a life altering event that necessitates considerable amounts of formal and informal care. The impacts of stroke often persist over time requiring ongoing support for stroke survivors. Family members provide the majority of care and experience many life changes as a result of their caregiving role including social, financial, employment and health impacts. Formal supports such as counselling, respite, and health promotion initiatives that directly benefit caregivers or benefit them indirectly through supporting the stroke survivor, are well-placed to help caregivers manage their caregiving role. However, to date little is known about formal service use by stroke caregivers and the factors that influence their service use. This scoping review provides a critique and synthesis of what is known about stroke caregivers’ access and use of formal services intended to support them. Findings suggest that while services are available, caregivers’ ability to use them are impacted by both facilitators and barriers. Facilitators included: sex, age, and having a higher household income (depending on services used). Barriers included: high cost, poor service quality and deficient knowledge/communication regarding service availability. This review highlights a significant gap in our knowledge of caregivers’ experience in accessing and using formal services.

publication date

  • June 2022