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Revista Española de Salud Pública

On-line version ISSN 2173-9110Print version ISSN 1135-5727


SEIRA LLEDOS, Mª Pilar; ALLER BLANCO, Ana  and  CALVO GASCON, Ana. Morbility Perceived and Diagnosed among Caregivers of Immobilized People in a Rural Health District. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 2002, vol.76, n.6, pp.713-721. ISSN 2173-9110.

Bacground: The progressive aging of the population has led to many families having to take charge of caring for some disabled family member. This new situation involved changes in the family situation, especially in that of the main caregiver, whose health may be affected. The objective of this study is to ascertain the morbility perceived and diagnosed regarding the main caregivers of disabled patients and to detect their health needs. Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study. The group under study was comprised of the caregivers of immobilized patients registered in the homecare program of a rural Healthcare Center. A sample of 50 caregivers was taken by simple random sampling, with a 95% confidence level and a 6% accuracy. The caregivers in question were surveyed personally and their Primary Care Clinical Record was reviewed. Results: The caregivers in question were predominantly females averaging 60 years of age, married, having an elementary school education, the daughters of the patients, having lived with the patient for more than 6 months a year. The morbility perceived most often were bone and joint problems (67.9%). Twenty-eight percent (28%) (IC 95%: - 16.2-42.5) showed psychological uneasiness with anxiety, 32% (IC 95%: - 19.5-46.7) related to depression. The number of stress-related problems reported by the caregivers totaled 72, a total of 10 being shown in their Clinical Record, none of the other problems in their Records being related to stress. Conclusions: The caregiver profile does not differ from other studies. Caregivers have multiple disorders (physical and psychological symptoms), go to see their physicians little, and their perceived morbility is underdiagnosed.

Keywords : Morbility; Caregivers; Immobilization; Home care services.

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