Who are the Alzheimer’s disease Caregivers in Trinidad and Tobago?

To identify the Alzheimer ‘s disease caregivers in Trinidad and Tobago we carried out a study with eighty seven caregivers of patients diagnosed with dementia  (Baboolal  NS, Davis G, Stewart R, Ramesar J, McRae A. Pioneering study on caregiver burden and dementia in the southern Caribbean .Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association . July 2010 (Vol. 6, Issue 4, Supplement, Page S335) and NS Baboolal, GK Davis, A Mc Rae. Assessment of caregiver burden in patients with dementia.  West Indian Medical Journal. 2009).

The results from this investigation showed the following information about caregivers:

—  Over 80% of caregivers were female

—  43% were offspring

—  24% were spouses

—  64% were over 50 years (age range of caregivers 27 to 86 years)

—  54.7% were married

—  46.7% had secondary school education.


The above figure shows the relationship of the caregiver to the patient in percentage.

International Concern for Women as Alzheimer’s disease caregivers

There is a global agreement including the one conducted in Trinidad and Tobago that women are the main caregivers for Alzheimer’s disease.  These revelations have set into motion studies (mainly from the USA) to expose how caregiving is impacting on the lives of women and the toll this is taking on their health, families and careers.

An organization entitled Working Mother Research Institute has conducted as survey with sponsorship by GE healthcare Medical diagnostics and assistance from the Alzheimer’s association and published the results a document entitled Women and Alzheimer’s Disease: The Caregiver’s Crisis http://www.wmmsurveys.com/ALZ_report.pdf

http://www.workingmother.com/research-institute/women-and-alzheimers-disease-caregivers-crisis For video presentation.

1. Working Mother Research Institute conducted the following study: from January 6 to 11, 2012, we surveyed 2,479 women online. From their data it was concluded the following about caregivers

Their study defines as a Caregiver as follows

The respondent who currently cares for an Alzheimer’s patient is a woman with lots of competing priorities—a job, children at home, a spouse or partner. Most are below retirement age.

According to our study, these caregivers more often than not are:

  • Between the ages of 50 and 59, average age 54
  • Married
  • Mothers (of whom nearly one third have children under age 18)
  • College educated (74 percent)
  • Employed, with a mean individual annual income of $43,500
  • Attending to patients with mid- to late-stage disease, most often women
  • Caregiving in their homes or the patients’ (only 16 percent are using nursing homes or outside facilities)
  • Assisting at least 30 hours per week
  • In it for the long haul (roughly half have been providing help for three or more years)

Working Mother Research Institute reports on the following:  6.7 million women devote some 10 billion hours per year to caregiving for Alzheimer’s patients—which works out to
about $126 billion in unpaid labor.

2.Maria Shriver and the Alzheimer’s Association have recently published the following document

The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Takes on Alzheimer’s on Oct. 14 to highlight the epidemic’s effect on women as caregivers, advocates and people living with this disease. http://www.alz.org/shriverreport/about.html

The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Takes on Alzheimer’s demonstrates that women are at the epicenter of the Alzheimer’s epidemic. According to the Alzheimer’s Association Women and Alzheimer’s Poll unveiled in the report, women are almost two-thirds of all Americans with Alzheimer’s and comprise 60 percent of the unpaid caregivers for family members and friends with Alzheimer’s. That means there are 10 million women who either have Alzheimer’s or are caring for someone with the disease. The toll Alzheimer’s has on individuals and caregivers is further compounded by the financial burden felt by families and the U.S. government.