Community-Based Long-Term Services and Supports: Are the Needs of Older Adults and Their Caregivers Being Met?

Wolff Caregiver LTSS

The goal of this study was to assess the adverse consequences of unmet long-term services and supports (LTSS) needs, to identify if and how caregiving characteristics are associated with adverse consequences, and if such factors differ among older adults with and without dementia.

The authors, analyzing the 2017 National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS) and National Study of Caregiving (NSOC), found that more than 4 in 10 community-living older adults experienced adverse consequences due to unmet LTSS needs. Older adults with dementia, greater LTSS needs, and low incomes more often experienced adverse consequences.

The authors concluded that policies enabling older adults who prefer to remain in the community do not currently offer enough support to do so. Increased financing for paid personal care services are needed to assist family caregivers. Reforms could include widespread availability of paid family leave, respite, and wraparound services.