The Value of Caring Survey – Findings and Recommendations
EUFAMI and the Department of Health Policy of the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) are pleased to inform that the 2-year research study on the Value of Caring is completed and the resources are publicly available.
EUFAMI’s ‘Caring4Carers’ survey found that the majority of informal caregivers are women, caring for a son or daughter and spending an average of 22 hours a week in caregiving activities. The stress placed in informal caregivers can be significant. Approximately 40 per cent report worrying about their own physical health, with nearly 1/3 fearing that their role as a caregiver detrimentally impacts their physical health. The caregiver’s mental health may also be at risk: nearly 1 in 3 feel depressed. In addition to health stress comes financial stress and social isolation. This culminates in a sizeable tie investment, equivalent to a job, however often without adequate support structures.
The Value of Caring is a project which builds on our Caring4Carers survey by looking at how unpaid (informal) care provided by family members and other unpaid carers is an important element of any mental health system, yet too often these contributions are not fully recognised or appreciated. Policy-makers are unlikely to be aware of the extent of the cost if they had to replace all of this ‘informal’ care with formal mental health services and support.
EUFAMI, in collaboration with the London School of Economics, is looking to obtain credible evidence on the economic contribution of family/informal carers of persons with severe mental ill health (in particular schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression) in order to share with policy-makers at European and national level and encourage investment in caring for carers, i.e investment in policies and services which support family/informal carers and strengthen joint advocacy activities EUFAMI undertakes with other NGOs.
Please, find here the resource documents relevant to the research study in English, German, French, Spanish, Finnish and Dutch: