Is it worth it? Carers’ views and expectations of residential respite for people living with dementia during and beyond the COVID‐19 pandemic

Samsi, Kritika, Cole, Laura ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7194-5616, Orellana, Katharine and Manthorpe, Jill (2022) Is it worth it? Carers’ views and expectations of residential respite for people living with dementia during and beyond the COVID‐19 pandemic. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. ISSN 0885-6230

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Abstract

Objectives
– The Covid-19 pandemic has taken a heavy toll on many people living with dementia and carers. Caring for a person living with dementia at home with limited avenues for support and a break challenged many carers. Care homes in England closed to visitors, with very few offering opportunities for a short-stay. We investigated impact of Covid-19 on views and expectations of carers of people living with dementia about residential respite.

Methods/Design – Qualitative interviews with 35 carers were conducted March–December 2020: 30 women and 5 men, with ages ranging 30 to 83 years. Interviews explored experiences, views of residential respite, and expectations post-Covid. Data were thematically analysed and salient concepts were drawn out and discussed within the research team and study advisers.

Results
– Three themes were identified in transcripts, relating to impact of Covid-19 on views and expectations of respite: (1) Carers described regularly negotiating risks and stresses of Covid, weighing up how to prevent infection and changing family arrangements to facilitate caring; (2) Carers were balancing different needs, prioritising needs of their relatives while bearing the impact of cumulative caregiving responsibilities. (3) Uncertainty about future residential respite continued, in terms of availability, ongoing restrictions and trustworthy information sources.

Conclusions
– Residential respite is a positive, acceptable option for some carers to get a break from caring. Covid-19 may have heighted some of caregiving stressors and there may be an increased need for a break. Views of care homes developed during the pandemic suggest that individual confidence to use respite may need to be rebuilt.

Item Type: Article
Identifier: 10.1002/gps.5680
Keywords: respite, Covid-19, qualitative, dementia, carers, care homes
Subjects: Medicine and health > Clinical medicine > Dementia
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Laura Cole
Date Deposited: 17 Jan 2022 14:56
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2022 14:56
URI: https://repository.uwl.ac.uk/id/eprint/8582

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