Objectives: This study examined concurrent and long-term associations between caregiver-related characteristics and the use of community long-term care services in a sample of 186 older adults caring for a disabled spouse. Method: We used two waves of data from the Caregiver Health Effects Study, an ancillary study of the Cardiovascular Health Study. Caregiver-related need variables as predictors of service use were of primary interest and included caregiving demands, caregiver mental and physical health, and mastery. Their contribution to service use was examined after controlling for known predictors of service use. Results: At Time 1, more caregiver depressive symptoms predicted greater service use; at Time 2, more caregiver activity restriction and depressive symptoms predicted greater formal service use; increases in caregiver activity restriction and depressive symptomatology over time predicted increases in service use. Discussion: Caregiver-related need variables play a significant role in defining utilization patterns of community-based long-term care services among older adults.
- Formal service utilization
- Older adults
- Spouse caregivers
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Sociology and Political Science
- Life-span and Life-course Studies