- Volume 56 Issue 3
This Study explored three issues in regard to the determinants of community service utilization among family caregivers of the dependent older persons. First, the differences between users and nonusers of community services were compared regarding to predisposing, enabling, need characteristics of the primary caregiver as well as the elder care recipient. Second, the variables which determined the contact of community services were examined. Third, the influence of the variables on duration of the community services among users was also examined. The data collected from 164 family caregivers were used for analyses. Findings suggest that community service users had higher education and higher emotional support, lower family income than nonusers. The level of cognitive impairment of the elder was also higher for users than nonusers. The entry into community services is more likely for elders cared for by caregivers who have higher educational attainment, lower family income and lower level of instrumental support. Once interaction terms for relationship between need factors and social support are entered, caregivers with poorer level of his/her perceived physical health and lower level of instrumental support are more likely to report use of community services. Among those reporting contact with services, more extensive use occurs for caregivers with lower emotional support and lower depression. The entry of interaction terms for relationship between need and support reveals that the combination of lower support(instrumental and emotional) and elder's greater physical impairment are associated with longer period of community service use. However, the effect of caregivers' depression followed the different pattern. For caregivers with greater depression, more supports are related with more service utilization. According to the results, implications for research and practice are discussed.
community services;family caregiver;impaired older persons